Almost everyone is guilty of giving the kitchen the evil eye after a long day of work and herding your family into the car and out for dinner. After all, who wants to bother with cooking and cleaning when you can simply pay someone else to do it for you while you enjoy time with your family? There’s nothing wrong with letting someone else do all the hard work once in a while, but eating out can be expensive. Don’t sacrifice your wallet so you don’t have to wash a few extra dishes tonight, learn to dine out without breaking the bank. Your wallet will thank you.
It’s All in the Timing
The key to eating out without breaking the bank is to go at the right time of day. If the restaurant you just have to go to is known for its amazing cuisine but not so amazing prices, go for lunch instead of dinner. Happy hour is also a good time to go – anytime your favorite cocktail is on sale is a happy hour! Prices are lower during lunch and happy hour can save you a significant chunk of change on those trendy cocktails.
Sign up For Deals
Websites such as Groupon, Living Social and restaurants.com are known for their restaurant discounts. You can purchase a gift card for your favorite restaurant for a fraction of the price it originally cost and enjoy your next meal practically on them. Somehow not having to cook or clean tastes even better when dinner is next to nothing.
Share Your Meal
Think long a hard about the last time you had a meal at home the same size as a meal at your favorite restaurant. It’s probably safe to say the last salad you had at home did not come in a serving bowl, like it seems to when you are eating out. When you think about how much food you receive when you are eating out, it makes more sense – health-wise and money-wise – to simply share a meal with your spouse or kids. Between appetizers, bread, and entrees, you’ll still eat more than you would at home for a fraction of the price. Not only will your wallet thank you, your waist line will, too.