7 easy tips for saving money when you eat out

It would be nice to sit down to a home cooked meal every night, but for most truck drivers, this just isn’t an option. Most truck drivers eat out A LOT — and the cost of all of those dinners can really start to add up over time.

That’s why we thought we’d bring you a few tips to help you keep your restaurant meal budget under control.

  1. Check out the menu online before you go into the restaurant. One way to keep costs down is to make sure that there are inexpensive menu options at the restaurant you are considering BEFORE you go ever set foot inside.
  2. Make a decision about what you’ll have before you go. If you’ve already decided that you’re having the less-expensive grilled cheese before you sit down for dinner, you’re less likely to blow an extra $10 on the chicken fried steak.
  3. Skip the soda. Not only is soda not-so-great for your health, it’s way more expensive in a restaurant than it is by the bottle at a gas station. Stick to water during your restaurant meals and save yourself $2-$3 every time.
  4. Get it to go. Tipping your server is not something that you should skip out on, but it can really add up if you’re eating out all of the time. You can save money by ordering food to go and eating in your truck. [Note: many people still like to tip $1 or $2 on takeout orders, but this is much less than what you would normally tip a server for a meal].
  5. Don’t be afraid of the doggy bag. If you have a fridge in your truck, there’s no reason to leave leftovers behind! Many restaurants offer such large portions that you’ll have lots of leftovers from last night’s dinner to chow down on for lunch.
  6. Consider snacking before you dine. If you go into a restaurant starving, you’re likely to ignore the menu prices and to splurge. Keeping your hunger under control by snacking before you eat out can help you keep your final bill lower.
  7. Punch cards are your friend. If you’re organized enough to be able to keep track of a company’s punch cards (buy 9 subs and get the 10th for free) you could wind up saving some major money on eating out!

Do you have any other tips for saving money on eating out while you’re on the road? We’d love to see them in the comment section!