The Famous Frugalista Find of the Week — Dining Out on a Dime

When you’re making every dollar stretch ’til it begs for mercy, going out to eat seems like an unaffordable extravagance. Especially during the holidays when you’re trying to pay the bills, buy gifts, and maybe put together a big dinner for family and friends besides. Ka-ching, ka-ching, ka-ching! Who’s got anything extra to spend on restaurant meals? (OK, maybe fast food once in a while, but not a real sit-down, served by a waiter, kind of meal.)

I’m always on the lookout for a good deal that helps us hold on to a middle-class lifestyle, even on a skinny little budget. Listen, Cupcake, you don’t have to give up those restaurant meals completely. You can still eat out and save, save, save at the same time!! And you know me, I’m all for saving some serious cash. They don’t call me The Famous Frugalista for nothing, ya know!

Want in on the secret? Of course you do! Just go to restaurant.com and select your state. Up pops a list of cities where you can find some sweet discounts. You can purchase a gift card online with NO fees and NO expiration date. I love that!  A $25 card for $10, all the way up to a $100 card for $40.  Whacking 60 bucks off a nice dinner out — Woo Hoo! Now that’s what I call the Frugalista Way!

restaurant.com

Image by FunnyBiz via Flickr

Check out the list of restaurants in your area, pick out your favorite, and use your discount card when you pay the bill.

Until December 25, there’s a special promo going on — a $25 gift certificate for just $1. You read that right — just one little ol’ simoleon! The catch is that only certain restaurants are honoring this deal. Check the web site to find out if there are any in your area and cash in. I’m all over this deal, Sweetie Pie!

Want more goodies? Check out Specials.Restaurant.com for daily deals like 2 dinners and 2 movie tickets for $25.

And Darlin’, how would you like to give a FREE $10 eCard to a friend, a family member, or just as a random act of kindness? You can send up to 40 a day through December 25, so now’s the time to jump on this special promotion.  Sound too good to be true? I thought so too, but it’s for real.

It’s part of the Restaurant.com Feed It Forward program. All you have to do is create a free account, then follow the step-by-step directions for sending out those $10 eCards. So easy to use and it won’t cost you one red cent. It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas . . . Ho, Ho, Ho!

English: Thomas Nast's most famous drawing, &q...

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I think Santa Claus just pulled up in his sleigh.

Just so you know, I don’t receive any money, discount cards, or anything else from Restaurant.com. I’m  passing along the savings info, in case you want to give it a try. If you do, I’d really appreciate it if you’d take a minute to let me know how the gift cards or the Feed It Forward program worked out for you.

© The Famous Frugalista 2011

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Save Some Moola With Free Christmas eCards

American card, circa 1940

Image via Wikipedia

Ho, Ho, Ho! Ready or not  . . .  It’s time to get those Christmas cards ready to mail — or email, as the case may be.

I know, I know — some of us are purists who insist that it’s not really a card unless it arrives in your mailbox, you rip open the envelope, and prop it up on the mantle.

But don’t you worry, don’t you cry, Sweet Pea, in the next week or so I’ll be sharing some places to get great deals on “real” Christmas cards and some super-cute ones that you can make in just a few minutes.

Let’s face it though, Darlin’, this IS the Electronic Age and gazillions of people are using email instead of snail mail to send holiday greetings to everyone they know. Two big reasons:

1) eCards are FREE (at least the sites I found for you are)

2) you can whip through that Christmas list quicker ‘n you can whistle “Jingle Bells”

Ready to start browsing through the selections? Lots of traditional styles, along with some that should make even Ebenezer Scrooge smile, religious ones, and a few that will just make you go “Aaawwww.”

Christmas cards with angels, scandinavian “nis...

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123Greetings.com – Hundreds of free cards to choose from and you’re not limited to just Christmas at this site. You’re going to see pop-up ads for the site sponsors from time to time on either side of the page. (Yep, they’re kind of annoying but it’s easy to close ’em up. Just click and they disappear.)

It’s the season to give to your favorite charities, right? And I know you’re a generous soul but on livin’ on a shoestring budget makes giving kind of tough. Here’s a totally painless (as in, “This won’t cost you one red cent”) way to give to charity and send out some cute eCards at the same time. Here’s how it works. When you send a FREE Care 2 eCard, it generates a donation to a good cause.  Check out the list at the bottom of the site to see the causes supported. There are over 25,000 eCards to choose from for all occasions too. Now how’s that for a win-win, Pumpkin?

Still haven’t found that perfect card for Great Uncle Harry or your new niece-in-law? Take a gander at egreetings.  You can make someone’s day without spending a dime. . . and it’s not just for Christmas either.

Rust Craft, circa 1950

Image via Wikipedia

How about Valentine’s Day, Cinco de Mayo, April Fool’s Day, even — are you ready for this? — Black Friday. What? You need a card to tell you to go out and shop, shop, shop? Lots of nice Christmas cards here too. And some are available in French, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. Now you can send greetings to all your BFFs around the world.

Got someone on your list who’d get a big kick out of a card that’s just a little goofy? Try Funny Ecards. To be honest, I doubt if they’re exactly right for your Aunt Millie, but then who knows? She might get a big belly laugh out of them.

If you use one of these sites, please let me know if you liked their service. I’m not affiliated with them in any way. In other words, Cupcake, they’re not sending me boatloads of cash for recommending them. It would be nice, but they’re not. I’m just passing the word along about them because as The Famous Frugalista I’m all about helping YOU save money. Yep, it’s all about livin’ high on the hog when you can’t afford bacon.

© The Famous Frugalista 2011