How to Keep Dining Out from Killing Your Budget
After housing, food is definitely one of the biggest expenses most people encounter, whether they’re dealing with a growing family or just one or two individuals. It’s quite a bit cheaper to eat in than it is to dine out, but sometimes you can’t avoid it so use these tips to keep your bill to a minimum:
Look at the menu before you go.
If you know roughly how much you’d like to spend on dinner that night, take a look at the menu before you go so that you know the price range and can decide what you might like to order. If you go in with a plan, you won’t be as tempted to browse the menu and spend more than you intended.
Ask for separate checks.
When you’re dining out in a group, there’s nothing worse than having the bill come only to realize you’re subsidizing your friends’ more expensive tabs. Some people may run up the cost of their meal on drinks, appetizers and coffee while you have a far simpler order. However, if you warn the waiter ahead of time, he should be able to give each person or couple a separate check so that you only pay for what you order.
Place a light order.
Many times when dining out, you’ll find that between a bread basket and some appetizers for the table, you’re not that hungry by the time your actual meal comes. That said, look at the appetizer menu and see if anything on that appeals to you and is big enough for a small meal. Most restaurants are happy to serve an appetizer for a main course. Plus, another advantage of eating light when you’re dining out is that you won’t wake up the next morning feeling like you gorged yourself the night before.
Split your meal.
Restaurant portions are usually huge! You can take advantage of this in two ways though. Either ask the waiter to wrap up half of your meal as soon as it comes so that you have automatic leftovers or ask another person at the table if they want to split a meal. Not only will you save on your bill but less food will go to waste.
|About the Author: Nivene obtained her Bachelors of Communication from Loyola University Chicago and currently writes for Its Economic by CashNetUSA, a company that specializes in payday loans online. She loves to discuss fashion, finance, TV and cupcakes. Rumor has it she has an owl fetish and drinks too much coffee – that is yet to be determined.|