It is a well-known fact that dining out in Singapore can be a very expensive affair especially if you do it regularly. There are however, many ways to save money when dining out at restaurants in Singapore. In this post, we list several ways to score discounts – we have personally used these hacks which enable us to afford dining out every weekend. Some of these hacks can also be used in other countries as well.
1. Use Restaurant/Food Discount Apps
Eatigo is a restaurant reservation and discount app that offers discounts of up to 50% at more than 6000 restaurants in Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. The app is useful for tourists visiting countries in Southeast Asia. It is important to note that their 10% to 50% discounts are for dining during off-peak periods. As such, it is only beneficial to diners if they do not mind having their meals at odd hours (e.g. lunch at 3pm or dinner at 8:30pm). Eatigo can be downloaded via GooglePlay store or App store.
The Entertainer app
We have personally used the Entertainer to get 1-for-1 main course offers or 25% discount deals for a range of restaurants. The Entertainer is essentially a discount coupon book packaged as an app and unlike Eatigo, the discounts are not timed. The full fledged app is currently available for puchase at SGD 65 (as at May 2021) but we got it for free when we applied and got approved for a HSBC Revolution credit card. The HSBC version of Entertainer is a stripped down version (contains about 1/3 offers of the paid version) but it is still packed with very good dining offers ranging from budget to fine dining.
This app is now our go-to app when researching for weekend dining plans. So far, we have used the app to get signifcant discounts at these restaurants: Hard Rock Cafe, Quentin’s @ Mess Hall Sentosa, Lobby Lounge @ Marriott Tang Plaza, Marmalade Pantry @ Oasia Hotel Downtown, Perch @ Jewel Changi, Tablescape @ Grand Park City Hall Hotel, Hoshino Coffee and Kiyoshi. For example, – we paid just SGD 89 nett for afternoon tea (4 people) by using two 1-for-1 Entertainer offers – usual price SGD 178 nett. Full terms and conditions of the Entertainer by HSBC can be found here. The discount offers are generally not available on public holidays or the eve of public holidays.
To apply for HSBC credit cards, please visit their main application webpage (click here).
2. Banks' Dining Offers
3. Mastercard One Dines Free Program
Mastercard’s One Dines Free program offers a complimentary main course for a group of 2-6 diners at several restaurants across Asia Pacific countries. This program is valid for any Mastercard holders. The thing to note is that reservations are necessary via Mastercard’s website at least 24 hours in advance – your Mastercard numbers need to indicated in the online form. One person gets to dine for free with a minimum of 2 persons dining per table. The cheapest main course will be complimentary at redemption upon paying with a Mastercard.
We recently used this program to reserve a table for 2 people and managed to get a free main course at the upscale Cherry Garden @ Mandarin Oriental (effectively an almost 50% discount for just main courses). The good news for world travellers is that this program is available in other countries including Australia, China, India, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand and Taiwan (Covid permitting). Full terms and conditions of the program can be found here.
You could get a Mastercard from any bank and it would be eligible for the One Dines free program. For example, you could consider the Citi Cash Back+ Card, Citi PremierMiles Card, Citi Rewards Card or Citi Cash Back Card. Apply through Citibank’s official application page (click here) or via SingSaver (click on the Singsaver advert below). Similarly, select the card which gives you the best sign up bonus(es) according to your needs and preference (e.g. cashback, frequent flier miles and/or premium products, eg, Apple Watch, Dyson products, etc).
4. Birthday Discounts and Freebies
If it is your birthday, you can get special dining discounts and/or freebies at F & B establishments in Singapore. LittleDayOut has compiled a list of such birthday discounts and freebies which can be accessed here. Please do contact the restaurant to confirm that the birthday discount or promotion is applicable before visiting because restaurants have been known to remove them without any notice.