I have shared many times that our family has a $100 per week food budget. But sometimes I just don’t feel like cooking. So we have a once a week $50 food budget when eating out. With a family of four, I get asked all the time how we eat out for under $50. Especially when we travel. But it’s really not that hard.
Find Places Kids Eat Free
Did you know that kids eat free at O’Charley’s every day with the purchase of an adult entree? What better way to keep your cost low than free food? Many restaurants have special kids eat free promotions throughout the week. Search “kids eat free” in your favorite search engine and sites like Jersey Family Fun will pop up and show you all the places in your area your kids can eat free.
Skip the Soda
Eating out can be a special treat for your family. Eating, drinking and snacking out can become more pricey than you want it to be. A single drink can add $2 to $3 to your individual total. Opt for water with any meal that doesn’t come with the drink included.
Use the Kid’s Menu
Most places have a kid’s menu options. Sometimes, it’s the same food in a similar quantity to the regular menu at a lower price. You can always ask for the lunch portion of your entree as well. It’s a smaller portion of the same food at a lower price than the dinner menu.
Get the Two-for-One
I used to think opting for the two-for-one menu was an excuse to sneak in a cheap date. Now I look for this option first when I open my menu. Chili’s has an awesome two-for-one menu that allows you to get an appetizer and two entrees for $22. Combine that with a couple kid’s menu entrees and your $10 per person budget is still intact.
Don’t Skip Local Joints
I’m very picky about what I eat. With all the food allergies I have, skepticism runs high when it comes to choosing a place to dine out. But many times, stand-alone restaurants that aren’t a part of a chain or franchise can be just as affordable and appetizing as the ones you know and love. You’ll often get more food for your money at a smaller place as well.
Dessert is a hit or miss choice depending on where we are in the budget that day. Sometimes we get it for the girls, sometimes it’s cheaper to skip it altogether and head to the grocery for an after dinner treat. Either way, we do it all for about $10 per person without eating fast food.
How much do you spend when you eat out? Could you do it for $10 per person on less in your family?