with the home-cooked meals. It's time to get out of the
house and let someone else prepare your food for a change.
In response to tight budgets, frugal advisers have
recommended for some time now that we stay at home to save
money. But such deprivation grows old fast, so maybe it's
time to consider these six tips to help you spread your
dining wings without crash landing your budget.
1. FourSquare Deals
Members check-in to various locations on their mobile phones
using this service, but did you know you can also receive
offers for freebies and discounts simply by letting
FourSquare know where you are? Check out a recent segment on
FOX & Friends for a "how to" on using the app for restaurant
2. Track Daily Deals
Restaurants are one of the most common frequenters of daily
deal offerings, so it pays to keep an eye out for vouchers
that can greatly reduce the cost of dining at a new or
favored eatery. Just make sure you read the small print and
are aware of expiration dates and exclusions. For example,
most restaurant vouchers don't include drinks.
3. Get Happy
Eating early isn't just for our elders. Happy hour ad early
bird deals have become more common as restaurants try to
fill in slow-traffic times. For example, Applebee's
Neighborhood Grill offers full-size appetizers for under $5
before 6 p.m., plus $3 drink specials.
4. Split It Up
American restaurants usually overload our plates -- unless
they're into nuvo cuisine -- so there's often enough food
for two in a single order. You can cut your costs down to
around $20 by simply sharing an appetizer, entree and
dessert with a friend or date.
5. Gift Yourself
We tend to think of gift cards in terms of what we can offer
others, but they're actually very useful for individual
purchases. Sites like GiftCardGranny.com let you purchase
gift cards for several restaurants at a discounted rate,
yielding immediate savings of up to 50 percent.
About the Author
Andrea Woroch is a consumer and money-saving expert for