A Valuable Amex Offer Is Ending Soon & How I Saved Over 70% On Lunch

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carrabbas amex offer breakdown

Carrabba’s Amex Offer Ending

The Carrabba’s Amex Offer has really turned out to be one of the better deals we have seen this year. On the surface it looks like a 40% discount. ($10 credit with a $25+ purchase.) The reality is the deal is even better for many reasons.

Among them are:

  • You can buy gift cards to use later.
  • These gift cards are good at Carrabba’s, Outback, Bonefish Grill & Fleming’s.
  • Currently you get a $10 bonus card with $50 in gift card purchases.
  • Outback, Carrabba’s and Bonefish have a 15% AARP discount.

Our Lunch Yesterday 70-75% Off

Over the past month or so, we have purchased a few hundred dollars worth of these gift cards in $25 chunks spread over Amex cards with the offer. They can be sold for a profit if I decide to, but for now we are hanging on to them. During our purchases, we received a $10 bonus card for each $50 in cards bought. This bonus card expires in July and only one of the bonus cards can be used per transaction.

Yesterday my wife and I had lunch at Outback. It turns out their fish tacos are pretty good. Who knew? Anyway, by stacking all of the deals we saved 76% off the cost of the food before factoring in a tip or 70% once the tip is factored in. Here is the math.

  • Check Including Tax: $20.52
  • Final Total after 15% AARP & $10 Bonus Card: $8.25

So the actual bill presented to us was $8.25 after the AARP and bonus card discounts. Keep in mind that the bonus card says it cannot be combined with other discounts, so YMMV as to whether they will stack. In my case they did. I paid the $8.25 with a gift card that was purchased at a 40% discount from the Amex Offer.

So before tip:

  • Total Out of Pocket Cost: $4.95 ($8.25 * .60)
  • Total Value: $20.52
  • Discount off face value: 75.88%

Of course we had to tip. Thankfully the gratuity can be paid for with the gift card as well. That means the tip is discounted by 40%. In this case we tipped $4 to the server. Remember our bill was $8.25 so after the tip I charged a total of $12.25 to the gift card.

So after tip:

  • Total Out of Pocket Cost: $7.35 ($12.25 * .60)
  • Total Value: $24.52
  • Discount off face value: 70.03%

Takeaways

Of course the higher the bill, the lesser the savings percentage wise from the bonus card. Still, right now it is possible to easily save a ton of money by combining these offers at Bloomin’ Brands restaurants. I don’t know about you, but I’ll take a 70% discount including tip any day and with the diversity of their brands, you are most likely to find something that you like to eat. The Amex Offer expires at the end of the month, so keep that in mind and enjoy!


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16 COMMENTS

  1. Did you purchase the gift cards during the bonus gift card promo before Mother’s Day? That would have netted a 50% savings.

  2. But didn’t you have to spend $50 in gift cards to get the $10 bonus card? You can only calculate your savings once you’ve spent down all of the $50 in gift cards – which means they’ve locked you in to returning multiple times…

    …and of course you need to factor in the AARP membership cost… as well as the fact that you are eating at Outback! 🙂

    • The AARP cost is marginal since I paid about $60 for 5 years and saved $1600 on flights. (See link above.) You are right that there is some small cost factor, but it is minuscule and I’ll leave everyone else to calculate it if they want to.

      You get the $10 bonus card when you purchase $50 in gift cards not when you spend them. The savings is immediate and my calculations above are actual real world numbers. Without the bonus card I would still be saving 49% between the Amex Offer and the AARP discount.

      Finally, Outback isn’t my favorite either. With that said the fish tacos were actually decent. I do like Bonefish Grill though and Fleming’s is decent as well for a bit nicer of an establishment. The best part of this deal is that the cards can be resold if I wish at about 75% of face value so I’m not going to be stuck with them.

  3. My question is, did you have the offer on multiple cards? If so, did you use both cards to buy 1 $50 gc and get the bonus? I have the offer on 2 cc’s.

  4. I’m still back on the fact that you tipped $4 for lunch. Doesn’t matter what the final bill is, someone brought you drinks, took your order, brought you food, checked up on you, brought your bill, brought it back, cleaned up your dishes and reset the table. For $4.

    • Shawn paid more than 20% tip so i don’t really understand what seems to be the problem. In my mind it doesn’t matter if it’s $4 or $1. As long as you pay a customary 15-20% in US, you are certainly not a cheapskate.

    • Yep, his tip was perfect. Sure, there are individual circumstances that may lead a person to decide to tip more of less than 20%, but if $4 is 20% that’s fair (or even generous).
      By your logic, I could decide to tip a lesser amount on a very expensive but easy to serve meal. You can’t have it both ways.

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