Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Americans seem to be fed up with frugality
Old 05-15-2013, 09:15 AM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
bUU's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Georgia
Posts: 1,914
Americans seem to be fed up with frugality

Restaurants sales at all-time high as recession fades - NBC News.com

They're either living in a different reality from me, or they're simply ignoring the reality that frugality is the new level spending plan.
__________________

__________________
bUU is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 05-15-2013, 09:21 AM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
SumDay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 799
Happy to say that we did our part to add to that all-time high as we visited our children for a Mother's Day get away weekend.
__________________

__________________
SumDay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 09:22 AM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Live And Learn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Tampa Bay Area
Posts: 1,689
My restaurant spending has increased over 180% in 2Q vs 1Q. In 1Q I had one restaurant meal ($25 for two at a local mexican place) vs 2Q where I went for a "real" dinner out ($70 for two). Mia culpa.
__________________
"For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." ~
Hebrews 12:11

ER'd in June 2015 at age 52. Initial WR 3%. 50/40/10 (Equity/Bond/Short Term) AA.
Live And Learn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 09:43 AM   #4
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 226
We prefer to pick up filet and lobster at Costco. DH prepares them perfectly while we sip some wine; no tax or tip required and we get a great meal at a fraction of the cost.

I agree that there is probably a lot of frugality fatigue, but I wonder how many people have adjusted to a more frugal lifestyle and will not be completely returning to their old ways.
__________________
misty57 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 09:52 AM   #5
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,939
Quote:
As the recession ever so slowly recedes, an increasing number of Americans say they are less frugal than they were a few years ago.
That didn't take long!

As for restaurant spending, well, I guess we are unintentionally bucking the trend. We are eating out as much as always (lunch every day), but my average monthly restaurant cost has gone down from $275 to $221 compared with last year at this time. We are just making less expensive choices this year. Water instead of diet Coke makes a huge difference.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 10:09 AM   #6
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 442
I really don't understand it. I see restaurant prices as high. I've been to some Asia countries where you can eat out cheaper than cooking at home but here in America you can cook at home for 1/3 the price of eating out. And this is the same country where folks spend 30K to remodel their kitchen with high-end appliances.
__________________
dmpi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 10:14 AM   #7
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,939
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmpi View Post
Ihere in America you can cook at home for 1/3 the price of eating out.
Or, to re-phrase this, you CAN spend three times as much eating out as it costs to cook at home. Or five times! Or twenty times! Or the same amount, at least here if you eat where we eat. Or less if you eat at places we tend to avoid. Restaurants buy their food in bulk, and this is how they can manage to run a business and still charge as little as some of them charge.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 10:24 AM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,629
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
Or, to re-phrase this, you CAN spend three times as much eating out as it costs to cook at home. Or five times! Or twenty times! Or the same amount, at least here if you eat where we eat. Or less if you eat at places we tend to avoid. Restaurants buy their food in bulk, and this is how they can manage to run a business and still charge as little as some of them charge.
+1

Recently DW & I have been eating more meals out but but spending less $$. With specials/coupons we often can eat out for same (sometimes less) than we would spend buying at grocery & cooking at home. And the more expensive places we used to frequent seem to be treating folks worse as they get more customers... which is a curious business model if you ask me.
__________________
ERhoosier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 10:29 AM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 489
+2

Our dining out and groceries expenditures have shockingly moved in a nearly 1:1 ratio. I figured it would be at least 2:1. Though, obviously, it is much harder to go crazy with groceries than with dining out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ERhoosier View Post
+1

Recently DW & I have been eating more meals out but but spending less $$. With specials/coupons we often can eat out for same (sometimes less) than we would spend buying at grocery & cooking at home. And the more expensive places we used to frequent seem to be treating folks worse as they get more customers... which is a curious business model if you ask me.
__________________
someguy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 10:36 AM   #10
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 944
I really enjoy checking out resturants in my greater area and while on trips - after insurance costs eating out is my largest consistant expense. I could cut back but at this point I don't need to..
__________________
Freed at 49. You only live once - live it
Donzo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 10:38 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
David1961's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,076
Some people really love the experience of dining out, and are willing to pay for it. Personally, I'd prefer to cook things at home.
__________________
David1961 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:23 AM   #12
Moderator
ziggy29's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 15,613
My recent unemployment sabbatical "trial retirement" has given me time to really start delving into meal planning and looking through recipes and stuff for inspiration. While there is a *huge* difference in cost between planning your own meals and eating out for (say) a family of 4, it's not *as* large for a family of 2 even though it still is a fair bit cheaper.

I'm looking for ways to use one or two day old leftovers as ingredients for the next meal, as this drives down the cost even more. It's not always easy to do, but I've always been "creative" with cooking (taking after my dad) and rarely use a recipe anyway.
__________________
"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)

RIP to Reemy, my avatar dog (2003 - 9/16/2017)
ziggy29 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:27 AM   #13
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,939
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
My recent unemployment sabbatical "trial retirement" has given me time to really start delving into meal planning and looking through recipes and stuff for inspiration. While there is a *huge* difference in cost between planning your own meals and eating out for (say) a family of 4, it's not *as* large for a family of 2 even though it still is a fair bit cheaper.

I'm looking for ways to use one or two day old leftovers as ingredients for the next meal, as this drives down the cost even more. It's not always easy to do, but I've always been "creative" with cooking (taking after my dad) and rarely use a recipe anyway.
Even eating leftovers at home, and cooking in bulk and freezing, I find I don't spend any more by eating out. YMMV and obviously does. I am sure we are both "right" and it is probably dependent on what is available in a particular community, plus I am cooking for one.

Also I have noticed that often those who discuss expensive restaurant costs include things like appetizers, desserts, wine/beer/cocktails, side orders of this and that, and other frills that I haven't indulged in for many, many years whether in a restaurant or at home. And then when they finally get to the main course, they eat the whole serving! That alone is probably four times as much food as one eats at home. I don't even drink diet soda at home, and this year we switched to water when we eat out, just as if we were at home.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:33 AM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
ER Eddie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 721
Americans have never been frugal, so the idea they are "fed up with frugality" is kind of starting with a false premise.

I'm glad people are out there stimulating the economy. Gives my portfolio a boost. I'll stay frugal. To me, it's a lifestyle, not a temporary adjustment.
__________________
ER Eddie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:38 AM   #15
Moderator
ziggy29's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 15,613
Quote:
Originally Posted by ER Eddie View Post
Americans have never been frugal, so the idea they are "fed up with frugality" is kind of starting with a false premise.
It's been increasingly "against the grain" in the last 3-4 decades, but over the course of *most* the history of the USA, most folks have indeed become more frugal.

The spendaholic mentality really came into being in an era where a middle class with nearly unbounded optimism still believed in upward mobility, increased prosperity as we get older, raises that beat inflation and job/retirement security. Absent those factors the default behavior *has* been frugality.
__________________
"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)

RIP to Reemy, my avatar dog (2003 - 9/16/2017)
ziggy29 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:40 AM   #16
Moderator
ziggy29's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 15,613
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
Also I have noticed that often those who discuss expensive restaurant costs include things like appetizers, desserts, wine/beer/cocktails, side orders of this and that, and other frills that I haven't indulged in for many, many years whether in a restaurant or at home.
True. I've heard Clark Howard refer to appetizers, alcohol and desserts as the "Bermuda Triangle" of dining out in terms of being where many restaurants have the highest profit margins and make most of their money.
__________________
"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)

RIP to Reemy, my avatar dog (2003 - 9/16/2017)
ziggy29 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:46 AM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 5,327
We like going out to eat but I try to be frugal about it. I track where we go and how much it costs. With an Entertainment or other half off coupon, and going out at lunch instead of dinner, minus what groceries would cost for the same amount of food to eat at home anyway, and eating out for us can be a pretty cheap thrill. The net cost is probably $5 plus mileage. We drink water and don't get any extras.

I do often wonder about the statistics on low 401K balances for most people and how full the local restaurants are, especially the chains with mediocre American food that most people could easily make at home.
__________________
daylatedollarshort is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:48 AM   #18
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,939
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
True. I've heard Clark Howard refer to appetizers, alcohol and desserts as the "Bermuda Triangle" of dining out in terms of being where many restaurants have the highest profit margins and make most of their money.
I didn't know that but I agree with him 1000%. Plus, restaurants make a lot of money by serving essentially four meals on one plate for the main course. And then, they also offer some very expensive, lavish choices as well as more reasonable ones. So, to compare apples to apples, choose the lunch sized grilled chicken dish that comes with a vegetable (not a side order, but on the same plate), and leave the steak and loaded potato for someone else. Then bring most of your meal home (or split with others), drink water, and order nothing else at all. Even so, the cost still depends on your community and what is available in restaurants and grocery stores.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:50 AM   #19
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,939
Quote:
Originally Posted by daylatedollarshort View Post
The net cost is probably $5 plus mileage.
At about half of our favorite restaurants that is our gross cost, minus the mileage since we eat near home. No coupons (I should do that! But I don't care enough to bother).
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2013, 11:56 AM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 5,327
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
At about half of our favorite restaurants that is our gross cost, minus the mileage since we eat near home. No coupons (I should do that! But I don't care enough to bother).
Cool! You have me beat. Is the $5 gross for two or one, and what kinds of places do you eat?

We go out for food like Mexican or Chinese, say $9 a meal with one for free. With tax and tip (on the full amount) that is $13 less the cost of what we would spend on groceries anyway, as the restaurant portions are often enough for 2 meals.
__________________

__________________
daylatedollarshort is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:50 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.