Night Out: How to Splurge on a Budget
Okay guys, for those of you who know me, I love a good deal. I am hyper-focused on my finances and am always looking for ways to increase my investments and my savings account, it’s like a game for me! Now, that isn’t to say I don’t spend money, but instead, I choose what’s most important to splurge on, and otherwise I try to be budget conscious and find fun ways to save when I go out. My philosophy has always been that I want to save, even when I don’t necessarily “have to” because it’s only going to help me in my long-term financial future.
Recently, while planning a Saturday night out at Mastro’s Ocean Club, I started thinking about what really makes an outing like that special for me. It’s really not the $100+ steak (even though it is really good!), but instead, it’s more the atmosphere and view, the time out, the cocktails, the specialty desserts, etc. It’s really more the things that are unique to that place that make it the most memorable. So we embarked on our journey out to Malibu and stopped for a quick bite on the way, and opted instead for just champagne and dessert at Mastro’s to make it a completely budget friendly evening!
We got a great table looking out at the water, and ordered a glass of champagne to kick off the evening. The champagne glasses are larger than typical flutes, so you actually get a pretty generous pour. While conversing with our server, we casually mentioned that our anniversary was coming up, and he surprised us by having the kitchen customize the dessert we ordered, and even added a second dessert to it! We ordered the famous butter cake, and they added the five-layer chocolate cake to our dessert plate. They were both wickedly good.
Here’s the best part. I am an avid OpenTable user, and use it anytime I can for our restaurant reservations. They have this great points program, which then converts into cash/gift cards that you can use at participating OpenTable restaurants. I have developed a plethora of points, and decided to cash out $20 to use toward this outing (I like to cash out in smaller increments so I can use them toward more things!) Overall, this evening out cost about $30 all in. Pretty incredible, right? Ocean view, great atmosphere, live music, champagne, 2 desserts and good company. Can’t beat that!
How do you splurge on a budget?