26 August 2020 12:35
BAGGING 50 per cent off your meal courtesy of the government is coming to an end soon but some diners have vowed to keep the discount going. The Eat Out to Help Out incentive gives customers half price meals when they sit in a restaurant, pub or cafe to enjoy their food. 1 Some restaurants have promised to extend the scheme even though they won't get help from the government Credit: Mirrorpix As long as the eatery is signed up to the scheme, the government will pick up half the bill, up to £10 a head, excluding alcohol. THE government will cover half of the cost of a meal out, up to £10 a head, including children's meals. There is no limit to the number of times you can use the discount, so in theory you can get half price meals on every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in August.
Businesses will need to register with the scheme on Gov.uk before being able to offer the discount, as well as be Food Standards Agency approved. Instead of issuing discount vouchers - which the government felt increased the risk of fraud - restaurants, cafes and pubs will be able to claim back the cash. Some chains have decided to extend the deal beyond the government's incentive, like Prezzo which has lifted the £10 per person cap and Carluccio which is including bottles of wine in the deal. Some restaurants have promised to keep the half price discount running even when they can't claim back the difference any more. Here's everything you need to know about when the scheme is ending and where you will still be able to get the discount. The Eat Out to Help Out scheme only runs on Monday through to Wednesday every week throughout August. Some experts and customers are calling for the Eat Out to Help Out scheme to be extended throughout September. The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) believes that eateries will struggle to keep customers coming back once the scheme ends. How to calculate the bill THE government will pay for half of your bill, up to £10 a head, when you eat out on certain days of the week in August. To check that it comes under the £10 per head cap, divide it again by the number of people who are dining. For example, four people eat out and the total bill that the discount can be applied to comes to £90. What discounts and voucher schemes can I use after the offer ends? There are a number of different discount and voucher schemes available that will continue to slice the bill even after the Eat Out to Help Out scheme ends. Tastecard is a members club for foodies that let's you get exclusive discounts at hundreds of restaurant chains, including Pizza Express and Ask Italian. Not all of the discounts can be applied to every order and some are only available on certain days of the week so check the terms and conditions before you sign up. Voucher websites such as Groupon and RedLetterDays lets you buy coupons for meals and experiences at specific restaurants and cafes for a discount. Make sure you read the terms and conditions of the deal before buying a voucher though, as they're often only valid for specific orders and dates, and can't be used on certain days of the week. Before deciding where to eat, check sites like VoucherCodes or VoucherCloud for any discount codes you can use to get money off your order. These can help you bag big discounts, such as two for one meals or up to 75 per cent off your order - sometimes it might just be a free side. Some restaurants will reward you with discounts or a free meal if you register with their loyalty scheme. Some businesses have decided that they will continue running the discount in September, even though they won't be able to claim the government subsidy. The eatery wrote on Facebook: "We are very worried that when August finishes, people will stop dining out as often as they do now, so we've decided to take the risk and extend the scheme further, even if it means selling the food at cost price." Smiths restaurant, which offers a French-themed menu, has announced that it will continue to run the scheme between September 7 and September 30. The discount will be subject to the same terms, so it will be capped at £10 per head and only apply to non alcoholic drinks. The South American inspired Manchester restaurant has said it will continue to run the offer throughout September. The same terms will apply, except the discount will be offered on Wednesday and Thursdays. The Brummie restaurant will continue to offer the deal on Tuesdays to Thursday in September, under the same terms. The restaurant can be found in Cambridge's Varsity Hotel and will offer the discount on the same days throughout September. All bars and restaurants run by the Signature group will offer the discount through September, picking up half of the bill themselves. Diners will be able to bag half price meals, including slow-cooked ribs and pulled pork, throughout August too. Most read in Money MUNCH TIME Asda launches new meal deal that costs HALF the price of Tesco and Boots MEAL DEAL Eat Out to Help Out end date: Is the scheme being extended? It's extending the deal at all venues through September but will be waiving the £10 per head cap.