From Grubhub to Doordash, many people are turning to delivery meal services amid the pandemic. Frankly, it’s okay to treat yourself to take out every once in a while, but ordering several times a week will take a toll on your bank account. Here are some tips on how to stretch your dollar without breaking the bank.

 

Look for Discounts

Instead of consistently using UberEats or GrubHub, try a different delivery service app, because oftentimes, these websites offer amazing new customer discounts. For example, Doordash is currently offering free delivery on your first order, while GrubHub is supposedly offering 25% off. On Postmates, by using the code SAVE100, any new customer gets $100 in delivery fee credits.

Some websites like Seamless even offer free delivery from certain restaurants 24/7, so make sure to scroll through all the options carefully before you pick your meal.

Delivery fees can range upwards of $5. It’s a small amount, but it eventually adds up. Next time you order in, try ordering with friends. You can easily split the bill on apps like Venmo and tack an egregious delivery fee down to a few cents. Always check out coupon websites like RetailMeNot. Oftentimes, the coupons on these websites expire, but every once in a while you get lucky, so it’s definitely worth a shot.

 

Buy Large Portion Sizes

Restaurants with large portion sizes are excellent options for those looking to stretch out a meal. Places like Chipotle serve large portion-sized bowls, which you can easily divide into two or three separate meal portions. Subway footlongs are another ideal sandwich you can divide into two. Ultimately, you’ll get more bang for your buck. The Cheesecake Factory and Maggiano’s Little Italy — although somewhat pricey — is also notoriously known for their large, family-style portions. The next day, you can always add in some extra ingredients to beef up the dish and create something different. Make sure to also order extra condiments, which might come in handy when whipping up a new dish.

 

Try a Meal Kit

Meal kits from Blue Apron and  HelloFresh are a great way to pamper yourself to a five-star meal from the comfort of your home. There are dozens of options out there that are super simple for non-cookers and come with a step by step guide with all the necessary ingredients. These kits can come at steep prices. However, some services are offering large discounts on your first meal. HelloFresh offers $40 off your first box, while Green Chef  is currently offering $30 off your first box, $20 off your second, and $10 of your third. The websites even offer a variety of options for those who are paleo, keto, vegan, or have other dietary restrictions. You also save a ton of money if you choose a larger meal plan or family plan option rather than a single or serving. There’s no better time to take advantage of those introduction deals, and some might even offer additional coupons for referring friends.

 

Find Free Stuff

Everyone loves food, especially when it’s free, and thankfully there are dozens of websites devoted to scoping out the best deals. Websites like Free Stuff Finder aggregate daily coupons, freebies, and deals on food items as well as clothing, household goods, and everything in between. This week, between June 1st  and June 5th, Krispy Kreme is offering free doughnuts every day for National Doughnut Day, while Dunkin’ Donuts is offering free classic donuts to customers June 5th. Through Grubhub, customers can also get a free half-dozen donuts on June 6th and 7th for any order over $10. Also remember to check out the restaurant’s apps for fast food restaurants like McDonald’s, which oftentimes will offer free fries with any purchase or a free treat.

With these meal hacking ideas, the opportunities are endless. So, the next time you order in, think about all the creative ways that you can stretch your dollar.

 

 

Resources:

https://www.areweadultsyet.com/2019/09/19/8-money-saving-hacks-for-meal-kit-delivery-services/ 

https://www.eatthis.com/secret-food-delivery-hacks/

https://spoonuniversity.com/lifestyle/15-delivery-hacks-will-change-way-order-forever