Restaurant gift cards are a popular option at the holidays and all year round. They offer a great clutter free gift option that will surely be enjoyed by the recipient. If you want to give a gift card to a restaurant, what are the best choices? What should you know and consider?
First, while it may sound obvious, be certain that the restaurant you choose does have a location convenient for the recipient. Receiving a gift card to a restaurant that is either not in their town or not easy to get to is likely to be more frustrating than appreciated. Also, do consider giving enough to cover a meal at the restaurant you choose. While any amount is a nice gift, if the recipient can enjoy their dinner without worry about the cost, it will likely be a more pleasant evening. If you know that the gift recipient has a favorite restaurant or type of cuisine, this is a good starting point. You might also give a gift card or certificate to your favorite restaurant to share a great dining find with a friend.
One of the best deals in restaurant gift cards is restaurant.com. While the selection may be limited, discount codes are often available alongside their already low prices. This may allow you to get a $25 gift certificate for $5.00 or less. Do realize that some of the restaurant.com gift certificates do have a purchase requirement or similar, so these may be better for your own use than to give as gifts.
If you are unsure what restaurant gift cards are good choice, and you have a wide range to choose from, do be aware that some restaurants share gift cards. One option might be to consider a card for Macaroni Grill, Chili’s, On the Border Mexican Grill and Maggiano’s Italian Grill. These restaurants share gift cards, making this a versatile choice. Hopefully more restaurant chains will take advantage of this possibility in the future.
American Express also offers a prepaid card especially geared toward dining, but usable at other merchants that accept American Express as well. This might be an option if you are unsure what to give, when shopping for restaurant gift cards.
In a pinch, consider gifting restaurant gift cards for those unexciting but basic snack stops or quick meals we all find ourselves opting for occasionally. Most people will enjoy a gift card to Starbucks or their usual pizza delivery place, even if it’s less a luxury and more a regular purchase.
Get Free Dining with Purchases
If you want the free dining for yourself then get a credit card with rewards points that you redeem for $20 at Olive Garden or $50 at your local steakhouse. There are several cards that offer easy online redemption for restaurant certificates that will be mailed to your home to give out to friends for presents or spend on yourself.