There are many benefits to eating out in London, including the sheer variety of cuisines you can enjoy at different price points and quality levels.
Ingredients, for example, play a big part in that. You can find top notch eats for relatively low prices. One of favourites in London for that is Bancone, a gorgeous Italian restaurant situated in Covent Garden.
The only problem? It’s easy to spend too much money on a night out, especially if you’re not careful.
These top tips help you save money while eating out in London like royalty without paying a king’s ransom.
1. Do Your Research
London has restaurants to cater for every taste, so take some time to do your research into different types of cuisine. It’s always better to eat somewhere you know would be great, rather than blindly choosing from an expensive menu.
The amazing news is that there are a handful of food recommendation platforms out there just for this. Blogs like Eating in London, Timeout, and Open Table, provide up-to-date restaurant reviews and other tips for eating out at great places on a budget, making your research easier.
2. Join a premium dining membership to Dine & Save
For restaurant enthusiasts, dining out is more than just eating—it’s an experience. But no matter how much you love trying new restaurants, it can get costly.
By joining a membership-based dining club, like the Eating in London VIP membership, you’ll be able to access premium reservations at great restaurants and dine with special members-only discounts.
The cost of these premium dining memberships varies depending on your location. But expect to pay a fair amount yearly for access to exclusive events and about 50% off your food bill when dining out. With savings like that, you might even be able to afford another trip back!
3. Book Ahead
You can always put a call ahead and make reservations to eat at popular restaurants; often, you can even snag a discount. Securing a table will save you from long wait times, but it’ll also help keep costs down because you won’t have to tip as much.
To take things up another notch, try visiting eateries during off-peak hours. Many restaurants lower their prices when they aren’t as busy.
Just check their website or call ahead before visiting—you don’t want to walk into an empty restaurant only to realise that it’s closed down permanently.
When browsing through menus online, search for coupons and coupon codes before deciding where to eat. When you do the maths over time, these small savings can quickly add up!
4. Check Food Deals Online Before You Eat
Even if you’re not going to use a coupon, it’s worth checking local deal sites to see if they have food deals before heading out. Often there are restaurant coupons available that can save you money off your bill before it even arrives.
It’s like getting an insurance policy against sticker shock! You never know when something might come up—and if nothing else, you’ll have a better sense of how much a place charges, before you show up.
These coupons are often digital coupons, so you don’t need to take extra time away from dinner with friends or family to print them off before dining out.
5. Know Where to Eat Cheaply Nearby
Restaurants don’t all have to be fancy and expensive. If you know where to look, there are plenty of affordable places to eat nearby. In addition, tons of great lunch deals are cheaper than you might expect.
These can run anywhere from £8-15 per person or less. In addition, you can find many good deals at small, local restaurants and cafes or at larger chains that offer special daily menus (usually printed or published online) and weekly specials posted outside each location.
The other advantage is that these special offers tend to change every day or week. So they won’t get old and boring right away.
6. Don’t get boozy and greedy
If you take a glass of wine, you can reduce the cost of your bill by up to half. Share a starter and perhaps the dessert, and your bill will be reduced once more.
For instance, I recently ate at Aster, one of the best French restaurants in London, on a date which was a bit expensive. But usually, I would have to do away with the cocktails, and we’ll share a starter and pud.
If you do it this way, you may practically cut the amount to an affordable price for two people, including service. That’s decent for central London, especially because you get to taste some new dishes and a new venue.
Wrapping It Up
Sure, you could always eat at home. But eating out is fun and exciting. In some cases, it’s even more affordable than cooking your food, especially if you live in an expensive city like London.
It doesn’t matter if you’re travelling solo or with friends; there are plenty of restaurants that offer great food and can cater to any size budget.
When eating out in London, try out these tips, from cheap takeout to high-end gourmet meals. You can thank us later!
It’s over to you now!
What other tips would you include to this short list?
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