Get Significant Discounts on Restaurant Food With This App

Ever wondered how restaurants decide how much food to buy? For example, what if one day all the customers want salmon, and next week they all talk about beef? Will they have a lot of perfectly good unused salmon in their fridge? Sometimes!

While we tend to think of food waste on an individual or family basis, it is also a problem for restaurants (and grocery stores, bakeries, farms, etc.). And that’s where the new Too Good To Go app comes in, which sells these beautiful yet perishable foods directly to consumers at hugely discounted prices. Here’s what you need to know.

How it works

The idea behind the app is to connect customers (like us) with local restaurants, bakeries and grocery stores that have surplus food, meals and ingredients, while reducing both food waste and our grocery bills. Too Good to Go was launched in Copenhagen in 2016 and now operates in 15 countries. So far in the US, it is only available in New York, New Jersey, and Boston, although Washington DC and Philadelphia are likely to be next.

To register

If you live in New York or Boston and want to try it out, start by downloading the app from your regular app provider (it’s free), enter your registration email address, then either provide a physical address or give the app access to your location. From there, you’ll get a list of available food items in your area, listed by institution and providing information on what’s available, how much it costs, and how many units are left for the day (these tend to sell out quickly).

So, for example, earlier today at the Murray’s Cheese store next to me, they were offering a $ 3.99 “dairy bag” surprise, which is very reasonable for their products. (It has since sold out.) There is also a $ 4.99 surprise lunch at a local Mexican restaurant, which usually costs $ 15.

And this is another point: in most cases, you do not know what exactly you will get in surprise bags or surprise food, so if you have food allergies, this may not be the best option for you. (Or just call the restaurant to see what’s available for that day.)

In addition, you have to physically go to the establishment to pick up the food yourself, and often you have to bring your own bag. But that’s a small price to pay for a delicious and affordable surprise meal.

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