Cheap Eats

Restaurants like to boost their sales in the final month of the year.  To entice you to buy their gift cards, they usually offer a “bonus” gift card for use at a later date.  This can be a pretty decent savings if you are a regular at a restaurant offering these bonus cards.  You’re going to eat there anyway. Why not get some savings? Nobody said that you actually had to give the cards as gifts.

  • PF Chang’s is currently offering a $20 bonus card, when you buy $100 in gift cards. Adding to that deal, if you’re a Bank of America customer, BankAmeriDeals is offering 10% cash back on PF Chang’s purchases. My net payout on $120 in gift cards would cost me $90. That’s pretty much an entire free meal for two.
  • California Pizza Kitchen is also giving out a $20 bonus card with the purchase of $100 in gift cards. And just like PF Chang’s, if you’re a Bank of America customer, BankAmeriDeals is offering 10% cash back on your spending in CPK.
  • Roy’s is offering a $25 bonus card when you buy $100 in gift cards.  If you’re going to Hawaii in the next couple months and can use the bonus card, you can have an extra good meal.
  • The Cheesecake Factory’s offer is pretty weak, but if you eat there regularly, you might as well take the free slice of cheesecake they’re offering for each $25 gift card that you purchase. (Side note: I went in to buy a $25 gift card last night. My receipt included a survey code that netted me a $10 eGiftCard. A free $10 gift card AND a slice of cheesecake. Score!!!)
  • Yard House will give you a $10 bonus card for each $50 gift card that you buy.
  • Panera jumped on the bandwagon, too with a $10 bonus gift card when you buy $100 or more in gift cards.  That’s a free meal.
  • Chili’s is offering a $10 bonus card when you buy $50 in gift cards.
  • Sweet Tomatoes/Souplantation will treat you to a free meal pass for every $50 in gift cards that you buy.
  • BJ’s offer is damn near offensive. Don’t waste your money. Who the hell wants some stupid glass?

Always check out the gift card bonuses offered at your favorite restaurants. And make sure to check out the fine print on the bonus gift cards before you buy. They usually are not valid until January 1 and they tend to expire shortly thereafter.

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