March 25, 2013

Dining out on the cheap...

Dining out is one of our favorite things to do on any given day. It’s easy, convenient and EXPENSIVE! Far too often we make excuses as to why we do not have enough time to cook at home or we’re caught up in running errands. After looking at our finances over the span of 3 months, I discovered that we spent over $700 on fast food and casual dining. Can you believe that?!? That’s nuts! There are so many better things to do with $700, instead we chose to eat out. 

If there is one area of our budget that we needed to work on, this was it. It really is a treat to eat out, and there are ways to cut that $30 average bill down by almost half. We learned some interesting money saving facts on how to stretch our dollars while dining out.

  • There are discounts out there
Try checking out the restaurants website and join their E-mail club
Try (click on restaurants)
Use Coupon Sherpa App (Available for Android & Iphone)
Do not throw away those weekly coupon circulars aka Junk Mail
“Like” your favorite eatery on Facebook

  • Yes! There are Freebies
In signing up for their E-mail club, you almost always sign yourself up for their Birthday/Anniversary club. Some offer a completely free meal or appetizer or desert. Others offer a free desert with meal purchase.

  • Divide and Conquer
There is something to be said about splitting a meal with your honey. I find that the majority of restaurants offer larger dinner portions that can easily be shared among 2 people. There are even some appetizers that can feed 2.

  • Keep it cheap
Instead of the overpriced soft drinks, why not opt for water?
Skip the three course meal and split an entrée.
Go during happy hour (Sometimes they offer ½ price meals)

It’s my belief that there is no reason to ever pay full price for anything these days, especially a meal. By using these proven tricks, we have easily reduced our spending by 75%. On average, we now spend $16-18 including tip on our meals.

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