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Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-24-2006, 08:14 AM   #1
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Restaurant Gift Certificates

I don't remember if I ever brought this one up in the past.
Although I don't eat out much, for the last 3 years I have been using the GCs from restaurant.com. If you are in or near a large city, you can enjoy lower cost dining. The GCs can be bought online. The typical savings is either $25 or 50% off the food portion of the bill. They charge about $3 or $10 per GC but I never pay retail. They have them on sale every month for 50% to 60% off. Living in NYC, I get to have a wide choice of restaurnats. Yesterday, I used my $1.20 GC and saved 50% on my $21 bill at a nouveau cuisine Italian restaurant with very reasonable prices.

MJ
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-24-2006, 08:27 AM   #2
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

Thanks, I am in the US for a month , will search on line for some coupons, should save me some money and also some arguments(what do you mean I have to cook, I'm on Holiday).
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-24-2006, 12:01 PM   #3
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

Never used the site. Any problems using the coupons? I hate those scenes where the waitress has to get the other waitresses, the cook and the manager into a 5 minute huddle to talk it over.

My local crappy hometown paper, and a couple of the junk mail fliers we get are loaded with 2 for 1 coupons, although I notice as of late they all require that you buy 2 drinks for $2 each and present the coupon BEFORE ordering. I've already confirmed that at the little thai restaurant in town that offers these regularly gives you quite a bit less food if you use the coupon. I think they're a little unique in that regard though.

I also note that many are dropping from 2 for 1 to buy one, get one half off. Hardly worth the trouble. But then again an 'expensive' meal in yuba city is about ten bucks.
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-24-2006, 01:34 PM   #4
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bulldog
I also note that many are dropping from 2 for 1 to buy one, get one half off. Hardly worth the trouble. But then again an 'expensive' meal in yuba city is about ten bucks.
How about Buy one and 2 drinks, get the other one half off. I love saving $3 on my Burrito Special plate, just to waste it buying $3 worth of liquid sugar. I just love it.





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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-25-2006, 12:54 AM   #5
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bulldog
Never used the site. Any problems using the coupons? I hate those scenes where the waitress has to get the other waitresses, the cook and the manager into a 5 minute huddle to talk it over.

My local crappy hometown paper, and a couple of the junk mail fliers we get are loaded with 2 for 1 coupons, although I notice as of late they all require that you buy 2 drinks for $2 each and present the coupon BEFORE ordering. I've already confirmed that at the little thai restaurant in town that offers these regularly gives you quite a bit less food if you use the coupon. I think they're a little unique in that regard though.

I also note that many are dropping from 2 for 1 to buy one, get one half off. Hardly worth the trouble. But then again an 'expensive' meal in yuba city is about ten bucks.
The few rare problems were nothing that couldn't easily be handled by assertive forum members. The restrictions are listed like a possible minimum amount or number of persons. I look for restaurants that will allow a minimum of 1 person with no minimum amount. They are becoming extremely rare for me. Typically here in NYC, the minimum bill has to be $35 which for 2 persons is not unreasonable. B4 purchasing the GC, I usually call the restaurant to make sure that they are still participating in the program. 2 years ago, I was able to eat great meals upto $25 for the cost of a $2 GC plus tip.
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-25-2006, 11:22 AM   #6
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

I checked it. Pretty much nothing near where I live. Some stuff about 45 minutes drive south, near sacramento. Most of the decent, interesting places are "sold out".
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-26-2006, 10:39 AM   #7
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

I've used these GCs several times ( including giving them as gifts) without a problem. BTW restaurant.com uses regularly ebay to auction off these GCs. I've gotten several for a buck....bon appitite

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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-26-2006, 01:42 PM   #8
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

I would recommend the Entertainment Book (entertaiment.com). They have a variety of B1G1F (up to a certain dollar amount). Sure, you won't be able to get a completely free tenderloin....but quite a few of the restaurants are great, have given me a reason to try them (and discover quite a few gems), and they don't have a "buy 2 drinks" catch...and, you don't have to show the card/coupon before ordering. Just about the only 'catch' is that it's not always clarified what an 'entree' is on the menu (i.e. does a sandwich qualify?). At most places, you have to order a true entree, but some places let you order any sandwich/dinner/entree (or lunch, for that matter). Also, a few places restrict when you can use the coupon (i.e. Friday and/or Saturday before 5:30pm or after 8:00pm...but the hours/days vary by place)

The year runs from Nov 1 2005 to Nov 1, 2006..so there is plenty of time to use 1 (or 2) books. .

Also, two other things I've found:

1) When you order on-line, you not only get free shipping, but you also get an instant $5 off your current order if you allow them to sign you up to automatically get the next year's book with free shipping. They send you an e-mail reminder next year before they ship it, so you can still cancel it in the future if you want to.

2) When you order it on-line for Christmas gifts, you can add a second book for just $5! The extra $5 for the 2nd book pays for itself after just 1/2 of a visit to a second great restaurant you find! And in May/June, you usually get an e-mail offer to buy another book for just $5 (so a 3rd/4th book is certainly a possibility ).

Also, they have coupons for activities/attractions in your city as well.
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-26-2006, 07:36 PM   #9
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

Another thing about the entertainment book is that if you buy it about halfway through the year (around june) you can often get it for ten or fifteen bucks shipped.

It also usually has a bunch of fast food, dry cleaning, car wash and other coupons in the back.
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates
Old 02-26-2006, 08:36 PM   #10
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Re: Restaurant Gift Certificates

Quote:
Originally Posted by BUM
I've used these GCs several times ( including giving them as gifts) without a problem. BTW restaurant.com uses regularly ebay to auction off these GCs. I've gotten several for a buck....bon appitite

You haven't bought restaurant.com GCs on ebay in nearly 2 years. They stop providing bidding GCs. Now on ebay, you pay the full cost of the GC so it's cheaper to wait for them to be discounted on their website but you must sign up to get the email alert.
For a $2 GC, I used to go to this excellent Indian restaurant alone and get a complete dinner plus an additional entre to take home for the cost of the tip.

It was good eating for $7 ($2 + $5).

MJ
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