“How Much is the Fish?” or How we Broke our Eating Out Habit

Eating Out _elizevent

Eating Out is a pure addiction. It is so easy to get used to it and become unnoticeably dependent from it. As soon as your “addiction” starts, the symptoms are: zero ideas on what to cook, “I am starving and by the time I’ll cook the food I’ll die”, “will eat out today and will cook tomorrow”, “Look, there is a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday…deal available.” 

The sad part is that almost each time, in Canada, you’ll end up paying around $80 for two adults and 1 child (our family scenario) for a table. Sometimes it can be $65, but that’s a rare case. And if eating out becomes a habit, that’s a lot of money spent monthly. Add coffees, occasional Lunches with co-workers that are around CA$15- CA$25 and here you are- extremely overspending and most probably overeating person, like myself. 

Math is simple, even If you dine out once per week and lunch out once per week it will bring you to approximately to CA$420 monthly. Let’s add our family morning coffees on top of it. One regular coffee costs around CA$1.75 per cup, so times two = CA$3.50 x 5 days = CA$17.50 per week x 4 weeks = CA$70 per month! And sure thing, we don’t take regular, 1.75 coffees all the time, often that’s ~$3.50 per cup or even $5 for fancy Frappuccinos. Therefore, if we sum up dining out, lunch out and coffee out consumptions it will bring to ~ $500 from our monthly family budget. Sounds a bit bizarre, Eh?!

The main reason, I started adding this numbers is our growing daughter with more and more extra and, honestly not cheap activities adding up in her area of interest and therefore life. One day seeking additional money source in our budget, I decided to review this area of our lives. And, after adding numbers together I couldn’t believe my own eyes. Numbers are way too high! 

Unfortunately, it is not that easy to get rid of this habit and it honestly took us enormous amount of time to switch back to home eating style again.  

Dining Out_elizevent

How we broke our Eating Out Habit:

  1. Have a dinner plan or always handy salad/BBQ ingredients in the fridge. 
  2. Outline aggressive savings rate goals or plan what you’ll buy or do with saved amount of money. Visualize the number! 

Will it be a vacation trip? In that case you can directly deposit “eating out” amount to a ‘vacation savings account.’ 

Will it go towards your mortgage to pay it out earlier and become a debt free?

Or it will it help to pay out additional activity classes for your child, do home improvements or simply save some money aside?

Have your strong “WHY” handy when new wave of cravings arises.  

  1. Implement a zero-tolerance policy (at least till you are in a “healing” process or time frame set). Help each other stay strong when willingness to go out hits.  And better preserve some of those unused dining outs to meet up with friends occasionally and enjoy the moment then.

The main idea is not to become a cave man and stop enjoying the life out. In plus, if those dining outs are unnoticeable for your family budget then…then, probably you are not reading this article at all. But if you are looking for some extra source of money from already predefined amount of money, Dining Out can be a huge source of it! 

In plus, let all family cook together, set the table, discuss how the day went by and enjoy the best dinner ever due to a one main reason: I Was Cooked together and With Pure LOVE! 

Hugs and Kisses,

Nina

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107 Comments

  1. 1
    • 2

      Lol! Absolutely yes! I just stopped eating sugar and try to avoid it in all foods possible (not an easy task so find foods as such in our days)..so, that’s a learning curve, for sure!

  2. 3

    Love this! I used to eat out a bunch too but realized how much money I was spending and had to figure out how to eat more at home! Great post!

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    Going out to eat is expensive. It is much more cost effective to eat at home and cook your own meals, especially if you are trying to eat healthy.

  5. 9

    I love this post, going out to eat is definitely expensive but this post allows me to think to prepare food at home that eating outside.

  6. 11

    Eating out is nice but not too much as a working person you need budget your money. instead to go eating outside make healthier food instead spend your money for unhealthy foods! well this is my opinion only thanks for sharing!

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    We stopped eating out a long time ago and noticed how much money we had spare a month. It’s nice being able to treat ourselves more and we’ve even been able to do up the house with our savings x

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    Eating out is my vice too. It’s my favorite thing to do, try new foods and not have to shop, make, and clean it up! haha. That being said, you are so right. My husband and I started budgeting and seeing the numbers we were spending on eating out were staggering. We started making meal plans and it has saved us SO much money.

  13. 24

    I told my friend a few months ago we are going to minimize our eating out because she was complaining she was not financially stable but she always wanted to go out to eat. Eating at home is ok and its actually healthier it shouldnt be the norm to eat out all the time.

  14. 26
    • 27

      I think, that’s ok to order pizza from time to time, or dine out with our friends. As long it is not the only option of eating it helps us save significant amounts of money that can go for way better things than eating, eating, eating 😉

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    We eat out every week with the whole family but home cooked meal most of the days. I think it is cheaper and healthier that way.

  17. 32

    My husband loves to take us out for a dinner or if it’s not possible, he would take home fast food. I always remind him to take caution in choosing what to eat. Aside from spending too much, it leads us to an unhealthy lifestyle.

    • 33

      Correct, last year we noticed how much do we overeat and that was one of the major reasons to stop eating outside or at least to dramatically minimize the number of eating out.

  18. 34
    • 35

      True…and at the end of the your when all summed up you may realize how much you could put into savings, or as a mortgage lump sum, or spent for a great vacation.

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