If you were on the fence, it’s time to get off

By Mir
October 14, 2008
Category Hot Hot Hot!

Look, I know some of you are skeptical about Restaurant.com. It does sound too good to be true, but I swear that it’s really not. You purchase and print dining certificates from your computer, then redeem that at your favorite restaurants for big savings.

Today (October 14th, 2008), for one day only, save 80% on your Restaurant.com purchase with coupon code EIGHTY. That means $25 dining certificates for just $2! Buy for you; buy for teacher gifts. Heck, at this price, you can even buy them for people you really don’t even like all that much.

Seriously, now: if you don’t want to save $23 for doing basically nothing, you’re on the wrong website.


  1. Thanks, Mir. While there were not many restaurants near me (like ONE…bummer)…I bought a certificate to give to my brother and SIL for xmas. Saved me $23! LOL

  2. Sweet! I just got a $50 Elevation Chop House & Skybar certificate for only $4! I’ve been wanting to check this place out forever.

  3. There are still only 3 restaurants near me, and the one I would LOVE to buy has so many restrictions ($50 food purchase, no brunch, 18% gratuity added, etc.) that I just can’t bring myself to do it. Grrrrr. But I keep looking every time you put these coupons up.

  4. Milwaukeans are known to be cheap – that may be why there are three pages of restaurants in our area that participate. I’ve used the certificates myself, and given them as gifts – never been disappointed.

    Even with the restrictions, it’s a good deal. A $25 certificate costs me $2. I have to spend $35, so I’m out of pocket $12 at that point, for $35 worth of food – a discount of 66%. Since I usually tip 20% or more, an 18% gratuitiy add-on is a deal for me. Even at the regular $10 price (which you never pay, with all the discount specials they run), it’s a 42.9% savings.

  5. There aren’t many restaurants that are actually near me and the one that I would like to use seems unrealistic – must spend $50, w/o alcohol. I’ve been there – I’d be ordering extra to try to get the bill up to that much. Dinner would run me $27 plus the tip (it looks like I must spend $50 on food alone, then add their 18% tip), when I can find coupons to the place that let me go there for about the same or less, without committing the money ahead and possibly losing the certificate.

    Maybe these work better some other places, but I can’t see getting worked up about it.

  6. That figures! They sucked me in with their 70% discount earlier this week. LOL

  7. Mir, you just got me a date. I did a search, and found there was a new restaurant added that just happens to be across the street from the independent movie theater. Upscale soul food and subversive liberal movie, here I come!

  8. I’m a little wary about Restaurants.com because I bought a gift certificate from them last year at Christmas time for my husband. Great stocking stuffer and I get a date night, right?? Wrong!! The restaurant went out of business before we could go.

  9. 0 restaurants in my area. Figures! But I can’t imagine getting this for a gift but my recipient would still have to pay $10 out of their pocket just to use the gift certificate. Doesn’t seem like much of a gift to me and I think I would be embaressed. But keep posting these. I check my town, the town I will be moving to and where our fmailies are each and every time, hoping I can get a good deal for myself. I’m staying on the fence for now 😉

  10. I bought several of these at the last 80% sale – 4 $25 gift certificates to 3 different restaurants. I thought $100 would cover quite a nice date dinner, possibly even for two couples. However when I looked closely at the certificates, it says you can only use ONE at a TIME! Dang! I still haven’t used mine. I guess if I don’t want to be out of pocket, I’ll just have to go my myself and have lunch FOUR times. Are you ladies seeing this on your certificates? Is it maybe only the restaurants I’ve chosen? Have any of you had luck presenting more than one at a time? This severe restriction kind of ruined my fancy dinner date plan.

  11. Julie, check on the certificates – some aren’t even good for lunch.

  12. I’m having SEVERE slowness problems with Restaurant.com today when I try to do a search – anybody else noticing this? It’s not my connection, because other websites are loading just fine.

  13. Personally, I think this is a great way to eat out! Spending $10 + tip for a dinner that would be $35 + tip is a good deal. I bought 3 certificates for 2 upscale seafood restaruants and 1 breakfast restaurant when my husband and I went to Las Vegas for a week end. We had some wonderful dinners and the wait staff was great. They were PLEASED to see the Restaurant.com certs, which surprised me. I like saving $23 on a dinner! Thank you Mir for all you do to save me money.

  14. Grrr, still only a couple places near me, none that I want. I WAS however able to get some certificates for a nice steakhouse where my brother lives, and he will truly appreciate the gift! Thanks for the tip!

  15. I *heart* you Mir, you are so, soo pretty!!

  16. I use these often, and never have a problem getting to the requested amount, justifying saving the money, or enjoying the meals I have had. Every once in a while I have been FORCED to order dessert, and it was painful, but I am that dedicated!

  17. I’ve used this a couple times and it works well as long as you know the rules for that restaurant going in – and we’ve found the servers are willing to help out… (we were $1 under and they still gave it to us, etc.).

    I just bought $70 of gift certificates for $5. Seriously. Now I just need the same type of certificate for the babysitter….

  18. The e-mail that I got about this today contradicts itself — the subject line said it’s for today only, but the e-mail said the offer expires 10/15/2008. Not sure what will happen tomorrow, but I just ordered now and got the discount.

    You definitely have to check the fine print for restrictions before you order, but I’ve used these GC’s several times with no problem. I just order the 6-month dinner-of-the-month club for my bro and sis-in-law at 80% off, and with that purchase got a free $25 gift cert. for myself! What a bargain! I’ve told SIL before about the restrictions (I sent them a single certificate the last time they did an 80% discount), they would go out for dinner anyway, and I sent the certificates for no particular reason, so I don’t think they’ll be unhappy that they have to order a minimum amount to get the discount. 🙂

    Eileen – when you discovered that your chosen restaurant had gone out of business, did you contact restaurant.com? According to their FAQ, you should be able to exchange the worthless certificate for a restaurant.com credit.

  19. Thank you SO much!!! I’d never have thought about the site for Christmas gifts (though I’ve used it before for other occasion) – and certainly wouldn’t have known about the killer discount. Well, I just bought 18 $25 gift certificates for a grand total of $36. Wow. Gifts for 18 people/families for $36. You’re the best!

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