Eating out is one of my greatest pleasures in life. I love food. Restaurants are a great place to hang out with friends, and to meet new people! I’m here to help you save a few bucks at restaurants and allow you to eat out more often.

Saving money doesn’t have to suck. Sticking to a food budget doesn’t mean eliminating fun! You can find all sorts of frugal ways to do the things you love and eating out occasionally can still be one of them. So, let’s discuss 5 great tips to start saving money at restaurants!

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5 Tips for Saving Money at Restaurants

#1 – Promotional Nights

Restaurants really just want people in their seats. Unfortunately, some days aren’t as busy as others! To counteract this issue, many restaurants will start doing promotional nights on their slooooooow days.

These are the days where you can get 2-for-1 meals, or a free dessert, or cheap wing nights. You should definitely learn all of your favourite restaurants promo nights so you can save extra on all the goodies you love.

#2 – Skip The Alcohol

Alcohol is hands down the most expensive thing on menus when you consider how much you actually get for your money. The average drink is somewhere from $5-10 and it’s never actually costing them that much money. Although it’s delicious, it’s better to just skip it.

If you’re in need of a little liquid courage for a dinner date, try and have a drink at home before you leave the house because it’ll be much less expensive in the long run! Sticking to water at restaurants an save a person at least $10 a meal, and you get to skip the hangover.

#3 – Take Home Leftovers

If you live in North America, chances are the portion sizes at your local restaurants are astronomically big. Like, how do they expect us to finish some of these things?

I’ve had pasta dinners at local chain restaurants where I’ve had enough for three meals! If you go to a restaurant and spend $20 on a giant meal and you don’t bring home the leftovers, you’re a silly goose! 

The average working person spends around $10-15 every single day on buying lunch, so why not bring those leftovers home and discover the savings?

#4 – Try Lunch Instead of Dinner

If you have a variable schedule during the week, or you have free time on the weekends, you can easily invite a friend out for lunch instead of dinner. Lunch menus are usually $5 cheaper than comparable items on a dinner menu, and they’re also much lighter which won’t make you feel groggy like a giant dinner meal.

#5 – Split Your Meal

If you’re eating with someone who is also focused on saving money, split your meal! This means you can split the bill, and save the calories. You can also just order a couple appetizers for the table and split the cost instead of everyone getting their own entree.

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Final Thoughts

These 5 tips aren’t life changing but a lot of people don’t ever think of them when they make plans to go eat out with their friends. It’s important to try and save money in every part of your life, whenever you can! Do you have any tips for saving at restaurants? Let me know in the comments below!


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