Saving Money On Groceries Without Coupons: Schedule Eating Out

Family having lunch at restaurant
Creative Commons License photo credit: Tetra Pak

If you are new to this series you may want to start at the beginning HERE.  While each tip is separate and you can do just one, when you combine all the tips, you will save the most.

When we first started cutting back on any eating out, it was so hard.  We tried to not go out to eat ever.  We quickly realized that we loved eating out and the constant never being able to eat out and get a break from out cooking just didn’t work for us.  We needed at least an every so often eating out.

So as we talked about what to do we decided that the best way to keep ourselves from splurging on eating out we would plan them.  We decided that a once a month Family Eat out would be the least that we could go out and still feel normal.  We would do everything we could to save money while we went out too.

So we decided the first saturday of every month would be our family eat out.  By having a planned time and date, we were able to plan in advance where we would go and how much we would spend.

Here are a few of the tips we learned as we started to do this in our family:

Get Gift Cards – Some restaurants do promos where they give out gift cards, or sell them at discounts.  This is a great way to save money now and later!

Restaurant.com – This site is a HUGE resource for saving money while eating out.  They offer many options for gift certificates and they often sell them at 80% off.  So you get a $25 voucher for $2!

Share the bill – Some restaurants offer HUGE portions that you really don’t need to eat all yourself.  A great way to save it to share the bill with some one else.  So if you have 3 kids that can eat one adult plate rather then get them each a kids meal, get them the adult plate and save some money.  Just ask for extra plates or ask if they can separate it for you.    You could also ask a friend to come along and share the entree’!

What tips do you have to saving when you eat out?

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