How much do you spend on dinners out?

milos_mommy

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#1
I'm not talking about how often or budget, but rather, in your area, what do typical dinners out cost?

Not fast food, but maybe for rough estimate the average cost of dinner at a diner, sit down casual chain, and maybe a slightly more upscale place?

There's a viral post breaking down the potential of free tuition in the US, and ***65039;comment states it would cost the average taxpayer $33, what the person cites as "one mediocre sit down dinner and drinks for two" which they'd be willing to give up for said cause.

There is no way in heck you could get dinner and drinks at a sit down place here for that much. Unless you're ordering what's on those "2 for $20" menus at Applebee's and even then, drinks are going to be at least $5 per person, plus tax and tip. I don't think those menus include fountain drinks either, so even if both diners only got one beer or something (and $5 a pop is a really low estimate) and then a fountain drink, you're still looking at $40 on up. Hell, it costs close to $33 if we go and get two deli sandwiches and each grab a juice or order a fountain iced tea.

Dinner for two is always going to cost around $40-$50 here unless you're ordering extremely budget consciously. No way could it be less than that with drinks. Even if you go to like Applebee's or a diner and order two cheeseburgers and drink water, you'd be pushing $33.
 

Picklepaige

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#2
It costs right at $30 for my boyfriend and I to get the "2 for $20" thing at Applebee's. We both normally get water, which is free, and tax and tip (we tip wayyy more than we should normally) ends up being right at $30. If we both get something besides water, that'll normally push it up to $33-35.
 

MandyPug

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#3
For a sit down dinner at my restaurant including drinks, tax, and tip you're generally looking at $40-50 and that's a mid range not hella fancy place without ordering an appetizer or dessert. My three course menu alone this weekend is $35 inclusive without drinks, the entree is about $25ish alone.

At a fancy sit down restaurant? $100 easily for two people to dine out without appetizer or dessert.
 

*blackrose

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#4
We could probably eat out for around $30-$35 bucks, including the tip. Probably even $25 if we got waters and cheap(er) entrées (like a burger). Average, though, I'd say around $40-$45. And that includes drinks, two entrées, and the tip. Obviously not a fancy meal - that would be at a place like Applebees, O'Charley's, etc. Although when we eat at a steakhouse we often just get a large steak and split the sides, so it averages about the same.
 

Fran27

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#6
For a mediocre dinner, $33 sounds about right for a drink and an entree.

For a good dinner, definitely closer to $60-70 for two.
 

stardogs

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#7
Lunch out at McAlisters or similar is about $20-25 for two people here.

Dinner at a similar level restaurant is probably $30-35 for two.

Dinner at the places we go to that are local, more upscale options but still casual usually run about $60-70 for two sans alcoholic drinks.
 

milos_mommy

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#8
Steakhouses here charge around $30 for a steak, no sides (unless you mean like Outback or something?) The big steaks you can easily split are like $45+. Plus almost every place charges a fee to share a plate.
 

Fran27

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#9
Typically for a nice meal here (fish or steak or chicken plus sides) it's about $25 an entree. Then $8-10 for dessert, $8 for drinks (I think. I only have water usually).

Sandwiches or burgers are always cheaper. It's actually really frustrating that you end up spending more for a piece of chicken with veggies than a burger and fries!

Obviously prices are all over the place though, I've seen some steak places that are $30 a steak too but they're pretty big steaks and I never have more than 6-8oz anymore.
 

milos_mommy

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#10
It's around $26-$32 for a 8-12 oz steak here. At the cheapest divey steakhouses that have paper napkins and sticky tables. Actually, I don't think the price is much different at the slightly nicer or much nicer places when it comes to steal.

The cheapest thing on the menu (that isn't a side) at one of our local cheap steakhouses is grilled cheese for $10.25. You can get mushrooms on it for an extra $2.

Chain restaurants are a bit cheaper, especially with their deals like 2 for $20, so I guess that explains why we have almost zero very casual restaurants that aren't fast food or cafes.
 

crazedACD

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#11
we could both easily go eat for 33 bucks, we could easily spend 150 without thinking either.
Yep.

We don't have chain restaurants in a reasonable driving distance so.. Probably the nicest place here is a Mexican restaurant. $7.99ish for a dinner and $4 maragaritas. Arrrrriba! Two people could eat out for under $33.

But yeah going to a chain restaurant, probably more like $40.
 

k9krazee

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#12
For a dinner and drinks I think $33 is a bit low -- I'd say more like $50-60 is normal here for two people in any of our local restaurants. $15 per meal plus drinks and tip.
 

Grab

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#13
At a casual sit down place here it would be similar...$30-35 with non-alcoholic beverages.

At a nicer place probably $50-60
 

milos_mommy

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#14
For those of you that say $30-35 is an accurate range:

Is that with alcoholic or fountain drinks? And is that considering any kind of specials like happy hour or two for one deals? Or is that two full priced mid-range entrees and beverages?
 

amberdyan

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#15
We just ate out tonight, lol. It was at a Mexican restaurant and was $36 with tax and tip. I got a tea, wife got a soda. They do have $1 margaritas, though. So we probably could have gotten some alcoholic drinks and still stayed under 40.

When we go to casual places, I expect to pay $35ish bucks WITHOUT alcohol. If there's alcohol or it's a nice place, definitely closer to 50-60.
 

Julee

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#16
I'm a really cheap date, so $35ish for two with a good tip sounds right to me. That's not with alcohol, though - just normal drinks.
 

GipsyQueen

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#17
Food in the US is SO.EXPENSIVE. :eek:

The last time SO and I went out to eat, we spent 32€ (including a tip & tax) - we had both had a starter & an entree and wine. I think the total bill ran at 26€ without a tip. (Taxes and the tip is included in the price here, everyone gives extra though) This btw was dinner, not the lunch special.

"normal" restaurants usually serve entrees between 7,50-12€
At your local sit down italian you'll get a GOOD pizza for 6-9€ and pasta for a little less.
 

kady05

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#18
I don't drink, so I always get water, but we can typically go out to eat and leave with a $35-40 bill, including tip.

We just went out last night to Yardhouse (big brewery type place with really good food) and spent $80 (with tip). That was for 2 entrees, my husband had a "yard" of beer (= to about 3 beers), and we also paid for one of our friends 2 beers too. I always take food home too, so I have lunch the next day from that.

That's one of the more expensive places around here. If we do Mexican we can get out of there for like $30, and that's with him getting a margarita or a beer, plus 2 entrees, and I have fajitas for like 2-3 meals afterwards too.
 

Fran27

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#19
Food in the US is SO.EXPENSIVE. :eek:

The last time SO and I went out to eat, we spent 32€ (including a tip & tax) - we had both had a starter & an entree and wine. I think the total bill ran at 26€ without a tip. (Taxes and the tip is included in the price here, everyone gives extra though) This btw was dinner, not the lunch special.

"normal" restaurants usually serve entrees between 7,50-12€
At your local sit down italian you'll get a GOOD pizza for 6-9€ and pasta for a little less.
Yeah I remember how cheap restaurants were in France... 4 courses menus were like $10! But that was 13 years ago and before they changed to Euros.

Pizza is still relatively cheap though, you pay $15-20 for a large (the size of 3 individual ones), and pasta isn't bad either, often around $10-12 for an entree... Burgers and sandwiches often $9 and they come with fries and sometimes a salad too. It's steak, chicken, fish with sides that are more expensive.
 

Fran101

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#20
$60 base line for anything that isn't a chain restaurant (and I really hate chains...)
 

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