Has anyone else noticed that this year the restaurants are unusually generous with their discounts? The Christmas/Holiday/New Year Season is typically a busy time for restaurants as people are meeting friends for dinner, taking the family out, and holiday parties are in full swing. So with the business more or less guaranteed prices are usually at their regular, meaning no discounts and scarce coupons.
This year seems to be different, everywhere I turn there is some sort of “special offer” going on! Perhaps it’s the economy or perhaps it’s the emergence of deal websites like groupon and livingsocial, but right now you can get pretty good prices on eats at a lot of major chains.
Applebee’s not only has “Sizzling Entrees” (prices as low as $8.99), but also a “2 for $20” entree deal. Chili’s is offering this same deal but they’re calling it “$20 dinner for 2.” This comes fresh of the heels of their promo, “30 Days of Daily Deals”, a coupon a day for things like a free kids meal or “Chips and Queso” appetizer (with the purchase of an entree.) Even IHOP is advertising “Holiday Hotcakes” for $4.99. Word to the wise, these flapjackss may be nicely priced but they are heavy in calories and full of sugar. If you’re going to go for them as a holiday splurge, I would split with a friend!
Even with these promotions and hungry holiday shopper syndrome, a lot of consumers are choosing to dine in this season. According to a Harris Poll survey from this past November, 61% of Americans said they plan to spend less on eating out in the next six months. So I would expect to see even more deals and offers to try and entice us out into the new year.
Lots of restuarants use social networking to alert potential customers to opportunities to save. All you have to do is like your favorite restaurants on Facebook or follow them on Twitter. It’s also worth checking out the restaurants actual website or if you’re really gung-ho subscribing to their email list for coupons and even special events.