Does your wallet cry when you want to enjoy a night out of the kitchen? Or does your “eating out” consist of dining in your back yard? Maybe you could use a few of these tips and get yourself out of the yard and into the restaurant!
1. Be Picky Eaters
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First, simply watch where you choose to eat. Good food can be found in places that cost half as much as others. (i.e. Fazoli's versus Olive Garden) You don’t always need to choose the fancy places.
2. Share Plates
Sometimes, choosing one larger meal to split costs less than separate meals, especially for the kids. Some restaurants charge for plate sharing. Ask before you order. They may only charge a couple of dollars and that is still cheaper than a full meal.
3. Skip Appetizers
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Be wary of the appetizer menu. They will end up being half the cost of your bill. I know you are starving and can’t wait for your meal to arrive, but which is thinner: your stomach or your wallet?
4. Feed the Kids for Free
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Look for places offering a kid's eat free night. Just about every night of the week you can find a different place offering free food for children when an adult meal is ordered. Find those places and eat out on those nights. We did this one night and wasn’t aware of the free service. When we paid our bill, it was $40.00 LESS than normal!
5. Budget Eating out
Plan your budget. Make sure you don't overspend by eating out too much. Plan one day a week, or once every other week to eat out instead. Then stick to your paln!
6. Use Coupons
Choose places that offer coupon deals. Find coupons for “Buy one, get one free.” There are also coupons for free appetizers, free drinks, and half of deals. Use them when you find them! Try looking on line for printable coupons.
7. Skip the Drinks
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Order water with lemon rather than a soft drink. It's better for you and half the cost. Drinks can be as much as $3.00 each. Order water and watch your bill drop as much as $15.00. If the place charges for refills, you could save even more.
These are only a few ways you can save while eating out. I have ordered a kids meal before! Do you have a way you save money while eating out?
Top Photo Credit: pierre pouliquin