Deals in Dining: Give Restaurant Gift Cards!

By Linsey B. Knerl      

"What’s in it for me" isn’t supposed to be your first thought when selecting a present. But be honest, isn’t it sometimes your second or third? If this is the kind of giver you are (no judgment from us!) restaurant gift cards are the way to go. With deals that let you walk away with one gift card for Uncle Bob and one for you and the fam, or pay a fraction of the face value, they let you be gracious, with just a touch of greedy on the side.

Buy One, Get One. Perhaps the most common promotion in gift card sales is Buy One Card, Get One Free. The free card is usually of lesser value ($5 or $10, for example) but can be used just like any other dining gift card. Give the bonus card to another friend, or keep it to treat yourself!

Gift Card Sale. Many restaurants offer savings of up to 20 percent on their gift cards, at various times during the year. This allows you to buy more card for the money, or you can choose to pocket the savings for another occasion.

Try New Places. You can usually find unique promotions during the opening of a new chain or location. Check your local newspaper for grand opening sales on gift cards and frequent dining perks. The gift of fine dining is nice, but allowing your giftee to take part in setting a trend is even better!

Give the Gift of Variety. Do you need to buy a gift card for a choosy diner? Consider giving a gift card for a family of restaurants that are good for any location nationwide. Online retailer Restaurant.com offers several gift card and discount promotions to little-known cafes and diners across the country, and they frequently offer significant discounts to customers who are buying for someone else. Try their Dinner of the Month club for a neat way to share new places with someone you love!