Frugal Foodies Rejoice: You CAN Dine Out On a Budget!
Being frugal when you’re a foodie isn’t easy. For the most part, dining out at restaurants is expensive. But if being able to go out and try new dishes and cuisines is something that makes you happy, you don’t have to fret. There are plenty of ways you can reduce your bill, so you can enjoy a meal out without blowing the budget. Here are some of the things to be aware of when you’re dining out frugally!
Restaurants Make Their Money On The Drinks
You might feel that restaurant food is expensive. But when you know you’re getting high-quality ingredients cooked by an experienced chef, it’s something that most of us can justify. However, one thing that you really shouldn’t put up with as a frugal foodie is paying over the odds for expensive restaurant drinks. You’re not paying for preparation or high-quality ingredients. They’re exactly the same as you’d buy anywhere else! The markup price of soft drinks and especially alcohol in insane. And so when you’re dining out on a budget, ask for a jug of tap water instead. You’ll cut some serious cash off your bill.
The Lunchtime Menu Is Cheaper
Often restaurants will have an almost identical lunch and dinner menu, but just with slightly larger portions in the evening. However, the difference in price between the lunch and dinner menus is often huge. And so if there’s a restaurant you want to try, go in at lunchtime. You can still sample the delicious food they have on offer, but at a fraction of the cost.
Many Restaurants Have Money Off Coupons
Why would you pay full price at a restaurant when there are perfectly good coupons that could be used? This could be either a free drink or a certain percentage off. When checking out the menu information before setting off, see if there are any valid coupons available. Alternatively, you might be able to find out if it’s cheaper to dine on certain days or the week or if they have offers on. All useful in keeping the costs down when you’re dining out.
Skip The Starters and Desserts
In comparison to the main meals, the prices of starters and desserts tend to be a lot higher. This means that even at inexpensive restaurants it’s easy to run up the bill ordering these extras. If you have a particularly big appetite, go for a side order instead which should work out cheaper. But for the most part, restaurant portions are pretty big and you’re not likely to walk out of a place hungry even if you just opt for a main meal. If you fancy a sweet treat to finish, pop into a shop on your way home and pick something up for a fraction of the cost. Then you can indulge in it a little later. It will probably be more enjoyable once your food has gone down too!
Do you have any tips for dining out frugally? Or are you happy to blow the budget once in a while?