Nov 11

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How to Save When Eating Out

I have had several readers ask me recently if we still go out to eat as part of our menu plan. The answer is definitely YES! When we used to eat out, it was a guilt trip for me. It usually happened because I was too tired after a long day at work to plan and cook a meal. The solution was dinner out. After paying $20-$40 and having a nice full tummy, the guilt would set in. I should have just made a quick dinner at home! Now we plan our meals and eating out and make sure we have the money in our “out to eat” envelope! What a difference! Here are some other tips I use:

  • Drink water. Not only is it healthier, it saves a ton too since most sodas are at least $2 per person.
  • Use coupons. Didn’t think I would get too far from my coupons, did you? I keep an eye out for mailers and community booklets that offer a dollar amount or percentage off our bill.
  • Think “Kids Eat Free”. A lot of restaurants offer a kids eat free night once a week – find out what night that is and go then!
  • Share! Instead of ordering multiple entrees, cut down on your bill by splitting your meal. An added bonus: less calories! 🙂
  • Check online. Before you head out the door, look online to see what deals you could take advantage of. Check Coupon Rover, Deal Chicken, Groupon, and Living Social for what’s available in your area.
  • Restaurant.Com. I make our dollar stretch by purchasing restaurant.com gift certificates at steep discounts and then using them when we go out.

What tips does your family use to save money and still enjoy a meal out? I’d love to hear your ideas!

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