Kids Eat Free
Find the best meal deals for your family
The cost of dining out for a family can quickly add up. By taking advantage of kids eat free specials at many local restaurants, you can enjoy a full meal without the hefty price tag. Keep reading to learn how to find these savory deals and to decode the fine print.
Seek out restaurants online.
The Internet is your best friend when it comes to shopping for restaurant savings. KidsMealDeals.com and MyKidsEatFree.com list dozens of chain and independently owned restaurants. You can browse by state and city. FrugalLiving.tv/free-stuff/kids-eat-free.html lists more than 50 restaurants, by day of the week. These sites cover restaurants nationwide, so call ahead to your destination to confirm the offer is valid before you visit.
Go directly to restaurant websites.
Although restaurant savings websites offer comprehensive lists, not every restaurant posts deals on them or includes all the details. Go directly to your favorite restaurant’s website and look for headers like “Specials,” “Special Offers” or “Weekly Specials.” (Denny’s, J.B. Dawson’s in Langhorne, PA and Big Fish Grill on the Riverfront in Wilmington, DE list their kids eat free specials on their websites.) While you’re online, sign up for the restaurants’ e-newsletters or link to their Facebook pages for more opportunities for discounts, and review menus for healthy options.
Scout out your favorite restaurants.
If you go out every Friday night for pizza, you could be missing that the same pizza place lets kids eat free on Mondays. Casually ask your server the next time you visit if there are any special offers for families. Some restaurants post promotions on the backs of menus, table signage and flyers near the entrance.
Take note of special restrictions.
The day the offer is valid is obvious, but other “fine print” can come into play when you redeem your deal, such as hours (only breakfast, lunch or dinner?) and location. A chain restaurant close to a school might offer free kids’ meals, but its outlet down the street from Grandma’s might not. Ages and dine-in only are other common limitations. Also, find out how many kids meals are free with a parent’s entrée. It’s usually one, but Champps Americana in Marlton, NJ offers up to two free kids meals for every entrée purchased.
Ask friends and family if they know of kids eat free and other local deals or new kid-friendly restaurants. Strike up a conversation about mealtime with other parents. You might make new dinner buddies, too.
Stephanie Halinski is calendar editor of MetroKids.