eat. shop. love. nyc.

Make the most of your certificate
February 26, 2010, 11:57 am
Filed under: Eat | Tags: ,

I get e-mails from all the time. For those of you not familiar with, it’s a website that offers discounted gift certificates to various eateries in town, usually $10 for a $25 gift certificate. However, only suckers actually pay $10 because they have an additional discount code or special nearly every week, and the certificates are good for a year from date of purchase. For example, right now, if you enter the discount code SAVOR at checkout (hit “apply”), you get 80% off the $10, so you only pay $2 for a $25 certificate.

Here are some tips to make the most of your certificates:

  1. Buy them when they are 80% off.
  2. Read the fine print carefully! There are restrictions on day of week, meal (lunch vs. dinner), minimum purchase, gratuity included, minimum number of diners, and what you are eligible to order and every restaurant has different restrictions.
  3. For day of week, many certificates aren’t valid on weekends, so double check.
  4. For minimum purchase, obviously it’s better if you’re required to order $35 instead of $50, and it’s also better if drinks count toward the minimum.
  5. Some restos don’t allow you to use the certificates during happy hour or on certain specials or prix-fixe menus.

I’ve enjoyed my experiences at Essex (LES – drinks count towards $35 minimum and you can use the coupon on HH and daily specials), Sachiko’s on Clinton (LES – doesn’t count towards HH or sushi bar specials), Salt (SoHo – organic, rustic American), and Les Sans Culottes (Midtown East – counts toward the purchase of 2 $25 3-course prix-fixe meals). I’ve got certificates for AOC and some others lying around at home that I haven’t gotten to use yet, but it really is nice to go to dinner and have a little subsidy. If you haven’t tried it yet, you should use it as an excuse to try a couple places you just haven’t gotten around to trying.


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