Most people when they first hear about this wonderful find are a little skeptical. What is the catch? Well, like any coupons or rebates there are some catches. But overall if you eat out with coupons often, there’s nothing you will be too terribly surprised by.
Once you sign up and order your gift certificates, you simply print them out from your computer. This works out nicely when going out to dinner at the last-minute. Also, these certificates come with a number of restrictions, so my overall advice is to print one close to the date you need it; there’s no need to purchase and print out many ahead of time.
When the website first went live there weren’t many restaurants listed for our big city. For the most part, these gift certificates are for new restaurants trying to get established. However, today I just went through the local restaurant list and found 25 in my city, and not all of them are new, fledgling businesses. Variety seems to be improving with time.
Glancing at the $25 certificates, the restrictions generally are as follows. Just note that they vary by restaurant.
Minimum Purchase $35, excludes alcohol
Sometimes restricted to breakfast or lunch
Limit one (1) redemption per party, per month, per restaurant.
Limit one (1) dining certificate per redemption. Only one dining certificate can be used per party.
Dining certificates cannot be combined with any other restaurant certificates, third party certificates, coupons, or promotions.
Dining certificates cannot be used for taxes, tips or prior balances.
Valid for parties of two (2) or more
Valid for dine in only
Expires one (1) year from date of issue, except in California and where otherwise prohibited by law.
$10 gift certificates generally require a $15 minimum purchase.
We tried these out while our kids were particularly little and not eating much, and found that we would have to order an appetizer and drinks to get to the $35 minimum. Overall, instead of saving money, we were just getting more food for what we usually spent. With the resulting leftovers, this was not necessarily a bad deal. But now that our kids are older and we are more likely to order appetizers and/or kiddie meals for them, it does seem to be a better bargain. You can see from the restrictions that these discounts are more suited for a family or a hungry couple than for dining alone or going out for a night of food and drinks with friends.
Of course we are still waiting for the website to add more of our favorite restaurants. In the meantime, it is nice to enjoy a discount meal and try something new once in a while.