Eating out is one of life’s greatest small pleasures. For some reason, meals just taste better when they are made out of sight, by someone else, and then brought to you by a waiter, don’t you think!? Of course, the one main issue that prevents all of us from doing this every single night is the fact that it costs money, sometimes more money than it is even worth! What you need are these ways to save money on dining out so you can do it more often.
Treat eating out like orientation homework. Make sure that you do all of the relevant research before making a choice. Look at menus, prices, specials, discounts ... all of the stuff that might lead you to make savings.
If four of you go out but you end up just eating two plates worth of food and leaving lots untouched, then be smarter and share main dishes instead of getting one each. There is nothing wrong with sharing.
3. Avoid Fancy Drinks
Don’t be tempted by the fancy drinks that you see on the menu, because they are all overpriced and generally only cost that much because they are wacky colours and have interesting names. Stick to the tried and tested house wines and cheaper beverages.
The more simple the dish is at a restaurant, the cheaper it is going to be, so tap into your picky eater side and opt for courses that are relatively simple and therefore more inexpensive.
5. Restaurant Week
Keep an eye and ear out for when your city’s seasonal restaurant week is. Most places have them, and they are weeks in the year where places offer big discounts and special menus in order to try to boost the eating culture of that town or city for the rest of the season.
6. Free Bread
Pick a place that offers free bread or breadsticks, and fill up on those so that you can enjoy buying a smaller, more affordable plate of food as your main!
7. Eat Beforehand
Have a smallish snack or plate of food at home before you leave for the restaurant, and then you will be able to get away with having a smaller meal and still be satisfied whilst being able to enjoy the eating out experience.
8. Day Specials
It’s worth checking out all of your local establishments to see what kind of deals and specials they do for different days of the week. Sometimes it pays to eat out on a Thursday instead of a Friday or Saturday.
9. Daily Specials
Actually listen to the waiter when he giving you the rundown of specials for the day, because there is often a cheaper than normal option amongst the more expensive ones.
Most big cities have some sort of China or Koreatown and they are havens for cheap dinners. There is something about Asian food that means a little goes a long, long way, not to mention that the ingredients tend to be simple and wholesome and therefore don’t cost as much.