Eating out can be a budget killer, but here’s 7 ways to reduce your bill when you do go out to eat:
- Skip the alcohol or other drinks (unless it’s a special occasion). These often cost as much as a meal, depending on your location.
- Skip appetizers and dessert; or split them with someone else if you’re really hungry/you just can’t pass up the peanut butter cheesecake.
- Check Groupon or Living Social for local restaurant deals (but read the fine print for restrictions).
- Choose restaurants with large portions and take home half your meal for lunch the next day (The Cheesecake Factory’s portions are great for this).
- Some restaurants offer cheaper lunch versions of dinner entrees, so check their menus ahead of time and consider meeting friends for lunch instead of dinner.
- If you live in a city where you have to pay by the hour for parking, consider making a reservation if possible- you won’t waste money on the parking meter while waiting 45 minutes for a table. Carpooling is a great option as well.
- Choose a vegetarian or pasta dish- these are usually the cheapest items on a menu.
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