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group buy/purchase programs for restaurants?

I'm based in North America and one of the most interesting marketing programs that I've seen is the Groupon idea. Each day, a different deal is posted for individuals to consider. If you like a particular deal that is being offered for a favourite restaurant or just a spot that you'd like to try, you'd purchase a Group Coupon online and then present it at the establishment.

Is there such a program in the U.K.?

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  1. google suggests it does exist - i've never come across it though.

    1 Reply
    1. re: abby d

      I've never heard of this programme, but there are monthly offerings at a lot of UK (London) websites for restaurants... www.london-eating.co.uk, Toptable etc. It's always possible to find a place with a 'deal.'

    2. If I understand it correctly, you only get the discount if enough people sign up, and you buy the voucher from the website and then pay e.g. half price when you get to the "attraction"? Given that there are free websites like toptable and squaremeal, and that there are always half-price vouchers available for free at pizza express etc, I'm not sure I see the benefit...

      1 Reply
      1. re: gembellina

        I haven't taken advantage of the food deals yet but for Groupon, one might pay $10 to get $30 worth of food and drink. It isn't so much a coupon in the traditional sense.

      2. Groupon has has had some decent deals in London. I'm actually going to A La Cruz in Farringdon tonight and using vouchers. 25 quid voucher for 8. Though for this deal you are limited to 2 people and 2 vouchers per visit. I bought a bunch and have been working them off w/ friends every few weeks.

        Dave

        5 Replies
        1. re: NYLONDave

          In case anyone is interested one of the groupon deals for today is 20 quid for 8 @ A La Cruz.

          Pretty good deal and pretty good meat and venue

          Dave

          1. re: NYLONDave

            It seems to me that most of the restaurants they offer are places with not great reviews. I'm glad this one is a decent choice... and may there be many more. It's the same with Groupon hotels. Most look a lot better than the reviews would indicate.

            1. re: zuriga1

              yes, I signed up on the basis of this thread, and most of the restaurants I've never heard of, and as you say the reviews elsewhere on the internet are not that great.

              Has anyone actually bought one of the deals? I'd like to know how it works in practice. Do you order your normal food and then pay the reduce price, or is there a set menu?

              1. re: gembellina

                I used the previous deal at A La Cruz. Its the only resto I have used w/ groupon in the UK otherwise I have stuck to massages and spa deals for my better half

                For A La Cruz you just need to mention you have a groupon coupon when you make the reservation and keep reminding them when you arrive and ask for the bill. You can order anything off their full menu and they basically just knock 60% off your first 20 GBP. Also looks like they removed the limit of 2 per table.

                A few tips that just came to mind;

                1. When making the reservation ask to be seated in the dining area in the front - its a more lively and brighter setting and you can keep an eye on the asador and other grills. The back room is on the dark side and lacking any vibe. If you dont like the front room you can always go to the back room. The front room fills up so if you dont reserve it you can end up in the back - not a horrible situation but I learned my lesson

                2. The amount of meat in the mini grills is more than enough for most. Especially if you get some starters and/or sides.

                Enjoy

                Dave

                1. re: NYLONDave

                  thanks for the info. the bf can eat his rather considerable bodyweight in grilled meat so any discount is welcome!

        2. I get daily emails from Living social, MyCityDeal (groupon) and Keynoir. Free to register and some interesting deals. The only thing is that its not always food/restaurants but can be spas, haircuts etc (this may not be a problem for you)

          3 Replies
          1. re: wongkei

            me too - and also a good UK one called KGB deals. All of them do decent restaurant coupons that go beyond the normal two-for-ones you can get for chains like pizza express. Another tip is, some good sites that send you all the deals from Groupon, KGB, LS etc... like www.city-treats.com (UK only)

            1. re: filtay

              Today's groupon is for a tasting menu at Semplice just off Bond Street/Oxford Street for £35. I haven't read the small prints.
              I have heard/read good things about this place (I have only been to the Trattoria which I enjoyed)

              A level up from the 2-1 from the usual suspects I think.

              http://www.groupon.co.uk/deals/london...

              1. re: wongkei

                To go on with this topic, does anybody know any daily deal sites which are handpicked? Something similar to http://www.worldofdeals.co.uk and http://www.dealnews.com. What else is there? I want something different to Groupon.