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You may have subscriptions for streaming services, apps, delivery services and more. But what about subscriptions to restaurants?
More and more restaurants are starting to offer subscription services that allow customers to get meals or other items at discounted prices. Subscriptions can provide convenience and affordability. Restaurants can also benefit from this model, as subscriptions provide them with a steady income stream and a loyal customer base.
Subway tried it with a $15 Footlong Pass last summer, which sold out of its stock of 10,000 in just six hours. On the Border introduced a $1 Queso Club in 2021, although it didn’t find that particular model to be successful and has plans to launch a new one later this year. Local restaurants, too, are jumping on the bandwagon.
From unlimited drinks to free tacos, here are a few subscription deals from national chains that make eating out more affordable and convenient.
Panera’s Unlimited Sip Club
With this subscription, you can get unlimited drinks for $11.99 billed monthly. You can also choose an annual billing plan for $119.99, or $9.99 monthly.
The Unlimited Sip Club beverage subscription includes all your favorite drinks from Panera Bread, including iced and hot coffee and tea, charged lemonades and fountain drinks. With this membership, you can redeem self-serve drinks once every two hours. You also get unlimited refills on all these beverages while in the restaurant.
Subscribers receive exclusive deals and rewards, like Sip Club Saturday discounts. However, espresso, cappuccino, cold brew and other specialty coffee and tea beverages are not included.
P.F. Chang’s Platinum Rewards
The restaurant’s Platinum Rewards program costs $6.99 per month. Members receive 20 points per dollar spent on all qualifying food and non-alcoholic beverage purchases at participating, twice the points earned by Gold Rewards Program members.
In addition, you can receive free delivery, access to the Platinum Concierge team, priority over non-members on the reservation waitlist, custom table settings and a free appetizer or dessert for your birthday.
Members automatically receive a $15 reward each time they earn 2,000 points. You can use your reward on any eligible item on the menu, excluding alcohol, gift cards and retail merchandise. Rewards can be used in the restaurant or on to-go and delivery orders and expire 60 days after they are issued.
BJ’s Brewhouse Beer Club
Fans of craft beer might appreciate a subscription to BJ’s Brewhouse Beer Club. Unfortunately, this exclusive membership club is currently only available in California. However, the restaurant anticipates expanding the club to other states.
The subscription fee is $30 plus tax per two-month period. Upon registration, you receive an Intro Pack of one 750 ml bottle of Imperial White Ale, a six-pack of any BJ’s Handcrafted Signature Beer, and a Founding Member pint glass.
During each two-month period, members will receive two small-batch beer types available only to members, typically in a four-pack of 16-ounce cans and one 750-ml bottle. They will also get unlimited upgrades of certain beers in restaurants.
Additionally, several other dine-in and takeout perks are available, such as one large deep dish or tavern-cut pizza per two-month period, one Pizookie and appetizer for dine-in visits and $10 for every $100 spent at BJ’s Brewhouse.
McAlister’s Deli, which is currently in 29 states, is known for its sandwiches, salads, and baked potatoes — but also for its lemonades and teas, both sweetened and unsweetened or with fruit puree added.
The fast casual restaurant offers an occasional $6.99 monthly Tea Pass that gets customers one tea (or tea/lemonade combo) each day for 30 consecutive days. The flavor shots are extra, though. You’ll need to be a Rewards member and check in to find out when the pass is going on sale — try around Free Tea Day in July.
Taco Bell Taco Lover’s Pass
When Taco Bell’s taco subscription service was available starting in early 2022, you could get one qualifying taco per day for 30 consecutive days. For $10 a month, subscribers were able to enjoy one of seven taco types every single day. So if you wanted a taco daily, it would come to less than 35 cents per taco. Taco Bell sold the Taco Pass again during just one day — National Taco Day — in October 2022.
Unfortunately, the restaurant says the Taco Lover’s Pass is gone “for now.” However, Taco Bell has noted that the promotion was a success, and it’s likely the company will bring it back, as it did before. The restaurant recommends downloading the Taco Bell Rewards app, so you don’t miss out next time.
Whether a restaurant subscription suits you depends on your lifestyle, budget and eating habits. Considering how often you go out to eat and how much money you’re willing to spend on meals each month can help you decide if these subscriptions are genuine deals for you.
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