Is Eating Out Cheaper Than Dining In?

26 Jan
family dining out

Dining out may cost you less than groceries!

Going out to eat to me has always been a special treat, no cooking, no cleaning, but of course at a price. However, with the rising costs of food and groceries, restaurants have made themselves competitive by keeping their costs relatively the same if not lower!

According to a consumer report released late last year by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, consumers have been spending more (almost 4.5%) on dining out. I don’t mean the 5 stars, but family restaurants are promoting more deals and with the added convenience of no prep time and left-overs for lunch the next day, sometimes it works out for the better.  Shopping and cooking takes time so it’s definitely more convenient for a family to eat out. The time saved on meal prep is then able to be spent on a second income or a part-time job which is the case with a lot of families these days.

Part of what makes this recession so challenging is that as salaries have been coming down the cost of living has been going up. Supermarket food prices have increased approximately 6% a year, about 2.5 times as fast as the cost of restaurant meals, according to the same report. Effectively making dining out more cost-effective. Restaurants have been struggling in this difficult economy as well so they are passing down the savings from their ability to buy at whole sale to diners like you and me!

Keep in mind though that restaurants have been providing themselves additional savings by cutting back on staff and decreasing hourly wages. Restaurant staff tend to be hard workers with a mindset that their money comes from tips, so restaurants have been able to get away with lowering hourly pay without too much fuss. Most restaurants also do not offer benefits so don’t forget to tip your servers people!


4 Responses to “Is Eating Out Cheaper Than Dining In?”

  1. Orlando_Food January 31, 2012 at 10:46 am #

    This article makes some good points regarding eating at home Vs. dining out. Take for instance just last week I ate at a local BBQ restaurant in the Orlando, Florida area @ In which, I ended up spending $14 on my meal. However, the portions were large enough to be able to eat 2-3 more times with refrigeration and planning.

    • restrow January 31, 2012 at 2:48 pm #

      Thanks! Sometimes we get so used to an idea that we think is true, e.g. that cooking your own food is cheaper, that we don’t change our views when circumstances change! And most family restaurants serve so much food that there is no reason why you can’t take some home for later!

  2. Homestyle kitchen February 24, 2012 at 11:39 am #

    The truth of it is that healthful cooking techniques need to satisfy only THREE basic and simple requirements the food you eat should not have excessive amount of fat and sodium i.e. should not be loaded with calories, it should retain the nutrients i.e. it shouldn\’t be empty calories above all, it should taste good.
    Nice Read, Nice to find another Food lover

    • Orlando Restaurant March 1, 2012 at 8:10 am #

      Is Eating Out Cheaper Than Dining In?
      @Homestyle Kitchen: You make some really good points regards health. I like when restaurant realize the three factors that you mentioned. Specifically retaining the nutrients of vegetables. Perhaps the trick to this is to not overcook and steam the veggies wen possible. There are many noteworthy Chefs in the Orlando Florida area, with many quality places to dine. Even the nicest of places sometimes overcook the vegetables. This is one of the things that I look for in a favor restaurant.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: