Review of my Restaurant.com experience

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  • I bought a $50 restaurant.com coupon for $20.   Here is how it worked out for me:   To be able to use this coupon, I had to spend a minimum of $100. Gratuity of 18% is automatically added to the bill. Sales tax is also added to the full value of the bill.   I took my family to the restaurant. We ordered $123 worth of food.    
 
  • Here is what the total bill looked like:  
  • Total                               $123.00
  • Tax -                                 $10.92
  • Gratuity 18%  -                 $22.14
  • Total                                $156.06
  • less coupon                         - $50  
  • Total spent =                   $106.06  
  •  cost of coupon                    $20  
  • Total out of pocket        $126.06
 
  •  I  will not do this deal again because the savings here really don’t justify the cost. Retaurant.com coupons average about a 25% savings for most people.   Because of the high minimum imposed in this case, my savings were diminished.  
 
  •  When is it a good deal?  
  • Restaurant.com sometimes discount their coupons up to 60- 80% off. In this case,  if I had purchased it at an 80% discount, the $50 coupon which I spent $20  for would have only cost $4.   At 80% off, my out of pocket then would only be $110 compared to $126. I would be able to live with that, but anyhow, just a heads up for those looking to buy restaurant vouchers from restaurant.com. This is the fine print.
lilywow posted Jul 14, 2012
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10 Comments
gangstabarbie
There is always a catch for these things. The catch here is that you have to buy $100 worth of food to be able to use the $50 coupon. Sure 80% might sound like a huge saving but be careful of the fine print! Thanks for sharing.
gangstabarbie (rep: 9.67k) posted Jul 14, 2012
10
rd995
nice to know i never use restaurant.com just because they never have a restaurant that i can go around my area everything will be like an hour away
rd995 (rep: 106k) posted Jul 14, 2012
10
MdavidK30
Well, Glad someone put it out there... who actually reads the fine print anyway?
MdavidK30 (rep: 3.56k) posted Jul 14, 2012
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jpanddanielle
Every time I hear anything about restaurant.com it's something terrible, usually "We don't accept their coupons, even though that's our chain name on there" or "We don't work with them, they don't have authority to sell coupons for us", and now this...
Thanks for sharing your experience so we can all learn from it, thumbs up to you!
jpanddanielle (rep: 96) posted Jul 14, 2012
10
ancagavs
Did not know that what seems to be a good deal can turn into an awfull deal. Good to know these things, that's why it's good to share.
ancagavs (rep: 15.3k) posted Jul 15, 2012
00
Acidbaby
Never bothered due to all the fine print and restrictions.
Acidbaby (rep: 6.83k) posted Jul 15, 2012
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NMSoCal
I have actually used Restaurant.com quite a few times, and have mostly had positive experiences.

Yes, it is true that some restaurants show disdain towards the customers who walk in with this certificate. I think that's a huge mistake: they have a new customer, and if they leave with a good experience, it is likely that they would come back.

I once had a restaurant refuse to honor a certificate because we ordered from a "special menu." Since that time, I've become overcautious and (1) call them ahead of time to make sure they would honor the certificate; and (2) let them know as soon as I sit down, that I will be using this certificate, and ask them to point out the exceptions. That seems to work well.

In Lilywow's original posting ... if she would have ordered $80 worth of food but because of the certificate, she was forced to spend $120, then I agree, she did not see a huge benefit. But if would have spent $120 even otherwise, then don't forget to include the tax and tip; you will certainly see the savings.

Also ... each time I have bought a certificate, it is with a discount code.

Finally ... I do not work for or represent restaurant.com. Please treat my words at the face value, posted by a satisfied customer; please do not read any more to it. Thanks.
NMSoCal (rep: 1) posted Jul 15, 2012
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NMSoCal
One more thought: when we say "fine print," we often imply that they deploy hidden tactics and deceptions. In reality, restaurant.com's fine print is very clearly written and is easy to understand.
NMSoCal (rep: 1) posted Jul 15, 2012
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nimrodboy3
yeah.it's really about the fine print and how much of a discount you get...restaurant.com offers a good amount of 80% off coupons..you just need to wait for them to get it..i use one often for sushi..usually works well..but recently they've changed their fine print to say that i need to spend $45 rather than the original $35..eh..still a good meal.
nimrodboy3 (rep: 68k) posted Jul 15, 2012
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nthsll
I use their certificates fairly often. There are only 2 restaurants in my area that I care to go to that participate, so I can only use them twice a month. Once on an 80% off deal I bought several gift certificates for myself and use them to buy individual certificates, usually in the lowest dollar amount offered (if fo my wife and I). That way I'm not strapped into buying too much food. The balance gives me a decent enough discount that it allows me to tip better and stretches the budget to go out a little more often.

Never had an issue with service or their certificates
nthsll (rep: 12.4k) posted Jul 16, 2012
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