We Want to go out to Eat!

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With the recent belt tightening that Americans, both employed and not so lucky, are doing, going out to eat has nearly become a thing of the past. However, kids that are accustomed to weekly nights out, as well as Moms who deserve the night off, want to go out and have a relaxing dinner. What to do?

Well, thanks in large part to that same belt tightening; restaurants are feeling the pinch as well and offering lots of great deals to get people in the door.

Breakfast and Brunch

Breakfast is typically much less expensive than dinner, no matter how fancy the restaurant is where you get it. Try some old favorites again at Denny’s, where they have a new value menu of $2, $4, $6, $8 meals, with 16 different items.

Some elegant restaurants offer brunch on the weekends, which can be a very full menu including carved ham and roast beef as well as all the accompaniments you’d expect for both breakfast and dinner. I’ve seen these types of full brunch menus advertised in our area for under $10 including a beverage, and less than $5 for children under 10.

Early Dinner

Some areas offer ‘early bird’ specials for dinner from afternoon to early evening, with a significant discount off the regular prices. I’ve seen some full entrée meals at one of our local steakhouses on the early menu at two for $12, and Two for $14. It’d be hard to cook a full meal at home for those prices.

Kids Eat Free

There are literally hundreds of restaurants across the country that offer free meals to kids who dine with their parents. Each restaurant typically has their own schedule of ‘kids eat free’ time, so check out this lengthy list of offers, but do verify with the restaurant as well to make sure nothing has changed. Coupon Divas kids list: http://coupondivas.com/kids-eat-free.html

Coupons and Promos

The Entertainment Books that are produced for each large city can save you up to 50% of the cost of eating out, so they can be a good deal for those who eat out a lot. Perhaps you should buy one to share with a few other families if you are only seldom restaurant diners.

Local radio stations do half-off dining certificates often, and you can purchase them from restaurant.com to save half off your meals. Also, look in the coupon clipper magazines that get mailed to the house once a month- there are often great deals. Sign up for restaurant newsletters and you’ll likely receive lots of good promos and coupons as well.

Other Miserly Tips

Order a large meal and split it in half, so that two can eat for the same price. Alternatively, have half the meal packed up before it even gets to the table and you have lunch for tomorrow.

Save on drinks by either ordering water with lemon, or a beverage that offers free refills. If you crave a mixed drink with dinner, order one and then stick to water.

Car-side service offers your favorite restaurant meals without the expensive drinks and tips, so if it’s just a certain entrée you’re craving, pick it up on the way home.

Seniors often qualify for 10% savings just by producing identification, so do not forget to ask.

Denise Gabbard is a professional writer, SEO, and Social Media Consultant. She also maintains a blog to help aspiring writers learn to earn money with their skills.

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