Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Saturday, September 12, 2009

$25 Restaurant Gift Certificate for $1

by Sariah S. Wilson

Today's another busy Saturday, and I still have a million things to do, but I thought I'd stop in and share this tidbit -

There is a site called Restaurant.com that sells gift certificates for restaurants at a reduced cost (like a $25 gift certificate costs $10).

A couple of things about this site -

1) It doesn't typically include major chain restaurants (TGI Fridays, Applebee's, Chili's, etc.). The restaurants included seem more like smaller local restaurants.

2) There are restrictions on how the certificates are to be used. The most common one that I see is that in order to use a $25 gift certificate, you have to spend at least $35 (which before tip/tax would make your meal $10). Different restaurants have different restrictions, so be sure to read the fine print before you commit to buying anything so you know what you're getting yourself into (sometimes it's for lunch only, or Sunday through Thursday only, or must purchase two entrees, etc.). The restrictions are right below the order button so they're easy to read.

So first I'd recommend taking a look and seeing if there's anything near you (you can tell it to search up to 30 miles away) that you'd like to try out. I checked out a couple of Utah ZIP codes - there are 52 participating restaurants within a 30 mile radius of Salt Lake City, 25 participating restaurants within a 30 mile radius of Provo (probably some overlap there).

Here's the deal part - Restaurant.com is running a special through tomorrow where they're taking ninety percent (yes, 90%) off the cost of their gift certificates.

Which means you can get a $25 gift certificate for $1.

How?

When you check out, where it says "Enter Discount Code" (yellow box near the top) enter the word NINETY.

You can also print out your gift certificates immediately, and they're good for one year. I bought three yesterday for some local restaurants here in Ohio, and I think these will make for some inexpensive date nights with my husband.

If you're not interested in going out yourself, you do have the option of buying gift certificates as gifts for others (click on the "Give a Gift" tab), or you can check out some of their online partners (like Mrs. Fields, although these deals don't seem to be quite as good - more like $25 off of $75).

Something else to keep in mind - as I told you earlier in this post, you can use a site like Ebates.com to buy these certificates - right now Ebates is giving 15% cash back for Restaurant.com, and it will pay you $5.00 for signing up and making your first purchase (so you head over to Ebates, sign up, do a search for Restaurant.com, click on the link and then Ebates will take you there and you just shop like normal).

You have to hurry - this Restaurant.com deal expires tomorrow!


5 Comments:

At 9/12/2009 8:03 PM, Anonymous Phouchg said...

I have been using restaurant.com for years and they do these promos frequently. It's a great way to discover small independent restaurants in your area while saving lots of money.

 
At 9/12/2009 9:45 PM, Blogger Me again said...

They go to 80% usually about once a month or so. 90% I've only seen once before. Of course I've only been using them for 6-8 months or so.

I've never had a problem using these certificates.

Oh, one more thing you forgot to mention. They usually will only let you use one coupon per month per restaurant.

For example, if you buy 30 coupons for one restaurant, it would take you 30 months to use the coupons. Not good since they expire in 12 months.

BUT, if you buy 30 coupons to 30 DIFFERENT restaurants, you could eat out every night for a month.

Got it?

Oh, a way to get around this is to have more than one account. the account is linked to your e-mail. so there are ways to be tricky.

 
At 9/12/2009 10:12 PM, Blogger Sariah S. Wilson said...

i've seen them at 80%, but never at 90% (but I've only been doing this saving thing since about January). I didn't know about the one coupon per month per restaurant - this is my first time buying the certificates. Like I said in my post - I'm looking forward to using them for date nights. :)

 
At 9/13/2009 2:28 PM, Anonymous RestaurantZoom said...

These can be a good deal, just make sure you understand the restrictions and fine print. Then have a great time!

 
At 9/20/2009 10:37 AM, Blogger Danyelle Ferguson said...

We actually got burned by using Restaurant.com - so be sure you read ALL of the restrictions and fine print. Such as you can't use more than one coupon per party, even if you are paying with separate checks, etc. They do have some good deals - just be sure to realize you are purchasing a COUPON not a GIFT CERTIFICATE. There's a distinction between the two.

 

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