When you’re on a tight budget, eating out becomes a luxury. So when we do get to treat ourselves, I always look for ways to stretch our money. Restaurant prices (even fast food prices) have gone up, way up, almost using up your whole food budget for the week. Although it’s hardly worth the hole in your budget and wallet, here are some ways that will slash the costs of eating out.
1. Use coupons. When you subscribe to your favorite restaurants’ email lists, they’ll send you coupons on a regular basis. Groupon is a great site to discover new restaurants and receive coupons to try them.
2. Stick with water. Soda can easily make your bill add up, especially if you order refills. Water is not only a free alternative, but a healthier one too.
3. Split a meal. Restaurant portions have gotten so big, you can hardly clean your whole plate. You’re better off saving money by splitting a meal or taking the rest home for the next day’s lunch.
4. Collect gift cards. I love earning free gift cards and I normally receive them by doing things I already do online like doing searches with Swagbucks. I also love to purchase from restaurant.com where you receive tremendous discounts.
5. Recreate your favorite dishes at home. If going out to eat is not in your budget, but you’re craving a dish from your favorite restaurant, why not try to recreate it at home. There are so many restaurant copycat recipes on the Internet.
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