Save Money When Eating Out

September 3, 2008 at 10:09 pm Leave a comment

We do not eat out (at restaurants) or order take-out very often, maybe once a month. Honestly, I am not a huge fan of restaurants. Most things are overpriced and I don’t know who prepared my meal or how it was prepared. I have heard terrible stories of what restaurant employees do to customer’s food. Obviously, I do not believe all of the stories, nor think every employee would actually do something, but the thought stays in the back of my mind.

It also is hard to find healthy options at restaurants. Sure, most restaurants offer salads, but usually they are made with iceberg lettuce – I prefer romaine or spinach, which are healthier. Depending on what is put on the salad, it can be full of fat and thus, not a healthy option after all.

Our family went to Chili’s this past weekend. Personally, I do not care for Mexican food. (I don’t like the spices.) Of course, this is one of my husband’s favorite restaurants. We had a gift card, so it made sense to go there. I looked at the menu and did not see anything very appealing. I decided to order 3 side orders: loaded mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli, and cinnamon apples. Sides were $1.49 each, so my meal was less than $5. I always get water, which helps keep costs down. My food was good and I was able to finish my entire meal, something that doesn’t happen very often, since most restaurants give such large portions.

I plan on keeping my eye on side dishes in the future. If they are priced decently, it can be much cheaper to order sides instead of a meal.

We ended up paying for our tip plus a few cents, since the gift card covered all but $.16 of our order.

When asked for gift suggestions for our birthdays and holidays, we request gift cards. This helps keep our costs very low when going out to eat.

Restaurant.com is another way you can save money when eating at restaurants. I have never purchased anything from this website, but I know people who have and agree it’s worth it.

Before you head out to eat, check your gift card stash to see if you have any for restaurants. Even if you just have a few dollars left on a gift card, use it, it will save you a little, which is better than nothing.

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Entry filed under: Food. Tags: .

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