No grocery shopping, no chopping and dicing, no sauteing or searing, no dishes to clean up afterward – what’s not to love about dining out?
The pain it can inflict on your wallet, for one.
According to Forbes magazine, Americans go out for lunch an average of twice a week and spend $10 each time, which adds up. That’s $936 per year!
Eating out, whether a group outing with friends or ordering takeout after a hard day that’s left you without energy to prepare your own meal, is an enjoyable activity.
It also can be expensive, but our tips below can help you enjoy dining at restaurants without feeling guilty about your dwindling bank account balance afterward.
Many restaurants have rewards clubs where in exchange for signing up for their e-newsletter, you can receive coupons and even free meals or other treats on your birthday.
Applebee’s, Baskin Robbins, Ben & Jerry’s, Benihana, Bennigan’s, Brio Tuscan Grille, Buca di Beppo, Cold Stone Creamery, Dairy Queen and Denny’s all give you a free birthday gift for belonging to their e-club.
Groupon offers deals for restaurants, fitness classes, activities and retail outlets in your area. Sign up at Groupon.com and enter your location to receive email updates of discounts and deals you can use at merchants near to you.
Many restaurants will offer a significant discount. For example, you can buy a Groupon for $15 that will be good for $30 dollars worth of food at an eatery in your city.
This is great for restaurants that may be out of your price range or giving that new restaurant you’ve been curious about a try without breaking the bank.
“Using these tips should fill your
stomach without emptying your wallet.”
You can save money on meals at restaurants with old-fashioned coupon clipping, too.
Spread out that newspaper and flip through that coupon insert or magazine. You’ll be sure to find savings. Cut on the dotted line and put it in your wallet.
Next time you press the snooze button instead of getting up to prepare a lunch to bring to work, you can use it to discount lunch from the sandwich shop a few blocks from the office.
If you have a smartphone, there also are a variety of apps you can download for your phone that help you find discounts and deals on eateries in your city. Investigate Scoutmob, Blackboard Eats and Savored to start.
Using one or all of these tips should fill your stomach without emptying your wallet.
Photo source: trainelite.com