How You Can Beat The All You Can Eat Restaurant

While buffets have been around for centuries, the “all-you-can-eat” buffet has been rumored to originate in the 1950’s in Las Vegas where some of the best buffets in the world are located.    The All You Can Eat platform has been implemented on colleges, cruise ships, and even at a section in the Dodger Stadium.   Our eyes can become bigger than our stomachs when we glance at all of the delicious items on the buffet.  Crab claws, pizza, egg rolls, pasta, shrimp, and every dessert imaginable.   Here are my three smart money moves on how you can ‘beat’ the all you can eat restaurant.

  1. Learn How To Prepare For The Meal–  First, do not drink sugary soda or alcoholic drinks when dining at a buffet.  You should stick to water if at all possible.  These sugar drinks tend to require more water to digest them.  This will not be good if your strategy is to eat more.   Consider starting your meal with some warm non-salty type soup that can help coat your digestive track as well.  You can actually hurt your opportunity to eat more by trying to starve before eating at a buffet, so eat light meals as regularly scheduled.  Even exercise can help you before a buffet meal.
  2. Learn The Pricing Of The Meal  Make sure you fully understand how the pricing of the meal will work.  Sometimes, an all you can eat buffet will not include drinks.   This is an important question to ask before sitting down for the meal.  In fact, even the common drinks like soda and tea can be $3.00 or $4.00 and might not include free refills.   Also, make sure you are clear about what’s included in the buffet.  It may be that certain menu items shown are not on the buffet which could add extra cost to your bill.  Shop around if you are in a place like Vegas as not all buffet menus are created alike, and one may fit your wallet or your taste versus another.
  3. Learn How To Plan Your Eating Strategy For The Meal   This is probably one of the most important parts to beating the all you can eat restaurant.   Start first with the MOST expensive foods on the buffet.  Do NOT get filled up with lots of bread and pasta because they will absolutely smell yummy and will crush your eating capacity!!   Second, make sure you take small portions of everything on the buffet.  Don’t overload too much on one particular type of food as this is an easy way to get your stomach bloated in a hurry as well.   Last, take your time in between plates.  Most people who get slammed at buffets load up on one big plate, chow it down fast, and then you are ready to head for the dessert table.    A quick side is note that buffet breakfasts hardly ever pay off for the bottom line at hotels.  Do your homework and check the menu so you can get what you really want.

It may only be once a year that you make your way to a buffet whether it is at a local restaurant or on a family vacation, but stick to these three tips so you can maximize your wallet share at the buffet table.

Written by: Ted Jenkin
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About the author  ⁄ Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves


My friends and family all think I’m a workaholic, but I say I’m just a guy that loves to help people do better in life.

My mother is still the only one that calls me by my real name Theodore Michael, my wife calls me Teddy, but for the rest of you it is just plain old Ted.

Ever since I was a little kid, I always loved money and being an entrepreneur. In fact, I still have cassette tapes of me talking to my grandmother at the age of five and my mother tells me all the time how much I played with money as a kid...

Read More About Ted Here

Ted Jenkin is a frequent guest columnist for the Wall Street Journal and Headline News Weekend Express. He is the co-CEO of oXYGen Financial. You can follow him on LinkedIn @ www.linkedin.com/in/theceoadvisor or on Twitter @tedjenkin.

Securities offered through Kestra Investment Services, LLC (Kestra IS), member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through Kestra Advisory Services, LLC (Kestra AS), an affiliate of Kestra IS. oXYGen Financial is not affiliated with Kestra IS or Kestra AS. Kestra IS and Kestra AS do not provide tax or legal advice.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect those held by Kestra Investment Services, LLC or Kestra Advisory Services, LLC. This is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific investment advice or recommendations for any individual. It is suggested that you consult your financial professional, attorney, or tax advisor regarding your individual situation. 

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