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How to Save Money at a Restaurant

Cutting back on your expenses doesn't mean having to cut out your entertainment completely. There are many ways to go for a meal at a restaurant without breaking the bank.


  • Step 1: Get an appetizer as your entree. An appetizer paired with a side salad can make a full meal. Saving money when dining out can make dining out more often a possibility.
  • FACT: In 1901, the average American household spent almost half their income on food. That figure was down to just 13 percent by 2003.
  • Step 2: Go for lunch. Some restaurants use their lunch menu right up until dinnertime, so even a late lunch can serve as an early dinner.
  • Step 3: Split a meal that you know is large enough for two people, such as a pasta dish. There is sometimes a split-plate charge, but it won't be as much as another whole entree.
  • TIP: Wine ordered by the glass is usually marked way up. See if the restaurant will let you bring your own bottle.
  • Step 4: Look for coupons before you head out on the town. There are coupons available on the internet, in newspapers, and in coupon booklets.
  • Step 5: Drink water instead of soft drinks or other drinks. Replacing a $10 margarita with a water can knock quite a bit off the tab.

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