Discount Dining Cards – Are They Worth It?

It’s been a bad couple of years for the dining industry, and despite measure such as Eat Out To Help Out, many restaurants are still struggling to fill covers. Hopefully with the Covid measures starting to relax, the industry will bounce back, albeit gradually. Discount Dining Cards are one way restaurants are using to fill their empty tables.

It might seem counterproductive then for restaurants to offer free and discounted meals at a time when every penny counts. Discount Dining Cards such as Gourmet Card and Taste Card do exacty that, offering customers to try restaurants with 2 for 1, discounted or free offers. These schemes not only help restaurants to fill empty seats, they also save customers money, particularly if you eat out regularly.

Free Meals? There has to be a catch!

Well yes, there is sort of! Restaurants offer different deals such as 2 for 1 on main courses, between 25% and 50% of the food bill or 2 for 1 on three courses. Depending on the normal cost of a meal this can save a lot of money. However, the offers can usually only be redeemed at a certain time. Busy nights such as Friday, Saturday or Sunday or busy months such as December are often excluded from offers as are Bank Holidays. And many restaurants will require you to ring ahead and reserve before you can use a card.

There are two main discount dining cards operating in the UK. The Gourmet Society and Taste Card.

Gourmet Society
Despite it’s name, The Gourmet Society has branched out from just offering dining discounts and has moved into lifestyle offers too. Not only can you get discounts from hundreds of restaurants in the UK, you can also claim up to 505 on outings and attractions across the UK, 30% on cinema tickets and 50% on Dominos and Pizza Hut deliveries.

Membership costs: £39.99 a year or £5.99 a month. 60 day free trial

Taste Card
Tastecard promises great value for money. On average, you can save £18.88 per meal, adding up to £226.56 a year if you eat out just once a month. Like their rivals Gourmet Card, they now offer lifestyle discounts and include some big name restaurants such as Ask Italian, Bella Italia, Cafe Rouge and Pizza Hut.

Membership costs £39.99 a year or £5.99 a month. 90 day free trial

So Which Discount Dining Card offers Best Value For Money?

To be honest, there is very little in it between both Gourmet Society and Taste Card, Both offer lifestyle discounts, meals, pizza and cinema deals. However, the restaurants differ between the two cards so it is worth checking what is available in your local area before signing up. If you eat out regularly you could make significant savings with either of these cards. And of course both offer a free trial so you can try before you buy

Get a Card for “free”

Of course being we can’t resist a freebie. And you can get a discount dining card for “free” if you buy any insurance product through compare the market. That’s one whole year of meerkat meals and movies.

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