Save It!, Spend It!

Save Money-Dine Out With Gift Cards

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Hello Sophisticated Spenders!

Now is the time of year when restaurants want you to come to their establishments to purchase gift cards.  They tantalize you with special offers like, free $5 gift card when you buy a $25 gift card or free $20 gift card when you buy $100 in gift cards.  Their sole purpose is to convince you to spend money with them and 9 times out of 10, the receiver of the gift card will spend over and above what was on the gift card.   Don’t get me wrong, restaurant gift cards make  great gifts and stocking stuffers.  It’s almost the perfect gift for almost anyone.  I’ve never been disappointed when I received a gift card to a restaurant-no matter which restaurant it is (ok, except for maybe Denny’s).

This is a great deal for restaurants that you normally go to.  For instance, today I was at Potbelly’s and they were offering a free sandwich with a $25 gift card purchase.  Why not just buy the $25 gift card before you purchase your sandwich and use your $25 gift card to pay for that sandwich and save the free sandwich card for later (or give that as a gift).  The same can be applied to other restaurants.  TGI Friday‘s is offering $5 for every $25 in gift cards that you order.  So if you happen to be there or going there soon (a great place for happy hour).  Just purchase $25 or $50 in gift cards and pay your tab with it  and you can either keep the other two $5 cards for yourself or give them as gifts.

You can also use this as a budgeting tool.  You can set a limit on going out to eat.  Maybe buy a $25 gift card for your area restaurant or Starbucks maybe once a month (more or less depending on your habits) and when the money is gone for the month, it’s gone.

What do you guys think? Do you buy restaurant gift cards during the holidays for the bonus offers??

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