While everyone loves a good takeaway meal from time to time, there’s nothing quite like the dining experience at a nice restaurant. Of course, you can never quite know what to expect when trying out a new establishment, but if you can find the combination of great food, friendly and fast service, and not being sat next to an annoying couple, then you’ve hit the jackpot!
The downside to dining out, you might have guessed, is that it’s usually far more expensive than a home cooked meal or takeaway. However, if you check out the following tips and play your cards right, you’ll find that it’s still easily possible to get a fantastic meal at a restaurant without breaking the bank.
For whatever reason, coupons just aren’t as popular as they should be! These little codes, often found in newspapers and magazines, can save you so much money and are really easy to get. Many people, just can’t be bothered to find them! Well, thankfully, Groupon.co.uk is probably the simplest method to get coupons nowadays and save some serious cash when dining out.
If you click on the ‘Restaurants’ section of the site, you’ll find that numerous chain restaurants and smaller establishments have coupons on offer. Sometimes there are completely free coupons to make use of, but more often than not, you’ll purchase the coupon but save a huge amount when you choose to have the meal. For example, at time of writing, Frankie & Benny’s has a two-course a la carte meal for two for £19.99 instead of £44.56 (55% off).
Try for a lunchtime menu
If possible, aim for having a meal at lunch instead of dinnertime. The prices are often considerably cheaper and the restaurants are not as busy. Some places even offer a ‘starter plus main’ or ‘main plus dessert’ deal to incentivise families taking the lunchtime menu instead of the dinner menu. Check out a few restaurants online to see if they have special deals at lunch and take advantage of the deals.
Keep in mind that if you’re dining with a group of friends and it’s time for the check, try one of the best bill-splitting apps to ensure that there’s no head-scratching about how to pay for everything. Lastly, if you’ve got a few hungry kids, then chains like Pizza Hut, Hungry Horse, and Fayre and Square often give free or discounted meals for kids, especially when school holidays are on.
Share a meal
These days, portions can be enormous at some restaurants! Sure, whatever is left over can always be brought home for a second meal the next day, but if taking food home is not exactly feasible (like if you’re going to a cinema or theme park after the restaurant, for example), then see if sharing with another family member works for you. If two people like margherita pizza but can’t handle a full one, then ask the restaurant to cut it in half and serve it on two plates.
So, there’s no need to spend a fortune the next time you dine at a restaurant. You can always get a tasty meal while saving loads of cash at the same time.