Do you like to eat out at a nice restaurant once or twice a week? That habit may be costing your household more than $500 a month. Zagat says the average restaurant meal in America cost $36 last year. The national average tip was 18.9%, meaning that even a solo diner spent an average of $42.80 for the experience. Foodies may be allocating even more of their budgets to fine dining. The average respondent to Zagat’s 2016 National Trends Survey reported eating out 4.5 times a week, with 85% saying they had planned dining getaways out of their area (effectively adding fuel costs to their tab). Even if you simply stop at fast casual eateries, the cost of the meal may be multiples greater than that of home cooking.
If you are eating out less these days, you are part of a trend. According to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll, a third of Americans say that they are eating out less in 2017 compared to 2016, with 62% of them citing cost as the top factor.2,3
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2 – zagat.com/b/the-state-of-american-dining-in-2016 [1/26/17]
3 – fortune.com/2017/02/22/restaurants-eating-out-americans/ [2/22/17]