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If you love Olive Garden and you love their pasta, then you’re going to be excited about their deal that starts on October 3rd. For 7 entire weeks, you can get never ending pasta at Olive Garden for only $100 when you buy their Pasta Pass.
Last year they sold all 2,000 instantly, so this year they’re offering 21,000. The sale starts tomorrow on September 15th at 2 PM.
What’s The Deal?
Get unlimited pasta for 7 weeks at Olive Garden from October 3rd, 2016 all the way until November 20th, 2016 all for $100. Here’s what the deal includes:
- Unlimited pasta bowls with toppings
- Unlimited Coca-cola drinks for both the passholder and their guests.
- Deal is only available for dine-in meals
- Ticket is only available for online purchase
- On sale for only one hour or until passes run out
- Limit of only one pass per person
- Valid at any Olive Garden location within the US
The sale starts tomorrow on September 15th at 2 PM, but a link to the sale page will be available a half hour early at 1:30 PM. Keep in mind that these passes sell out quickly, so you’ll have to act extremely fast. Last year 2,000 sold out immediately, so they’re bumping up the amount to 21,000. If you get the pass, all you have to do is show it to your server.
Since the passes tend to sell out quickly, Olive Garden has an auction just in case you miss your chance. You can bid for 21 additional Pasta Passes in a charity auction in which all of the proceeds go to Feeding America. Didn’t get the pass but still want to save money? Not to worry – we’ve listed a few helpful steps to save at Olive Garden and other restaurants down below.
Buy A Discounted Olive Garden Gift Card
You should never be paying full price for Olive Garden meals since there are plenty of discounted online gift cards that you can buy through gift card resellers. These resellers buy unwanted gift cards from consumers like you and I at a discounted price. In order to make a profit, they mark it up slightly, but the price is still much lower than the actual retail value.
For example, Cardpool is one of the most reputable gift card vendors that sells Olive Garden gift cards at 17% off their retail value. This means you can get a $100 gift card for just $83. Most of the gift cards they sell are electronic, so you don’t have to wait any longer than 24 hours to receive it in your inbox. However, most of the time it will arrive within the hour.
In fact, we suggest avoiding physical gift cards. There’s a higher chance it will be lost in the mail. Cardpool has one of the best money-back guarantee programs. If for some reason your gift card doesn’t have the claimed amount, contact their customer support team and they’ll gladly refund the money you spent.
Check Other Gift Card Vendors
Although Cardpool has one of the highest discounts on Olive Garden gift cards, it doesn’t mean it’s this way all the time. Their rates frequently change depending on demand as well as their inventory. That’s why we suggest using a tool called Gift Card Granny.
This gift card vendor search engine allows you to search for a gift card at a specific retailer and return you a list of rates from different sites. I always type in the restaurant name here first and then proceed to the gift card site to make a purchase. As we can see in the image below, Cardpool comes out on top with a few others right behind.
Some gift card resellers have a bad reputation. That’s why we recommend only going with the following. Take note that we have personally used all of these. If we’ve ever encountered a problem with a gift card reseller, then it won’t be on this list:
Use A Cash Back Portal
If you shop through Raise and Cardpool, you can use cash back portals to get an additional 2% back. These portals are websites that partner with thousands of companies across the web and place their affiliate links onto one site. When you click on one of these links, they earn a small commission. Instead of keeping all of the money for themselves, they give back the majority (if not all of it) to you in the form of cash back.
For example, when you use the TopCashBack shopping portal, you can get 2% in cash back at both Raise and Cardpool. Not only that, but you also get a $10 bonus just for signing-up as a new user. You need a minimum of $10 in earned cash back to cash out for PayPal or Amazon Gift Cards.
We know that the concept of cash back portals can be confusing, so we recommend reading our cash back portal guide.
Save Your Receipts For Receipt Scanning Apps
Do you usually throw away your receipts? You’re not going to anymore. Receipt scanning apps pay you to take a picture of your receipt from your smartphone. All you have to do is make sure to include the total, restaurant, and a clear picture of the items you ate. Wait up to 24 hours, and you’ll find cash back in your account. The great thing about these apps is that you can stack them. Use the same receipt for all of them to increase your cash back.
The most popular receipt scanning app on the market is currently Ibotta. They have one of the widest variety of deals and are partnered with tons of retailers. For example, you can get $1.50 back on a glass of Estancia wine or $2 back on a glass of Chloe wine. Right now they only have deals for alcohol at all restaurants. They sometimes have specific deals for meals that are only available at Olive Garden, but not currently.
Keep in mind that Ibotta is primarily meant for groceries, getting you anywhere from $.25 to a few dollars in cash back. However, they’ve been rapidly expanding to the restaurant industry in order to get you more deals. You can find deals at Buffalo Wild Wings, Chile’s and Red Robin just to name a few.
When you reach a minimum of $10 in earned cash back, you can choose to withdraw it in the form of a gift card of your choosing. Wait until you reach $20 to get a PayPal withdrawal.
Use A Cash Back Credit Card
If you don’t want to try any of the above methods, you can also get a credit card that gives you a high percentage in cash back at restaurants. Right now the Chase Freedom Card gives you 5% in cash back at any restaurant until the end of September. Their deals change quarterly. This card is great as an all-around credit card, especially since it comes with no annual fee. Here’s a quick glance of what it offers.
- 5% in cash back on categories that rotate quarterly
- 1% cash back on all other purchases
- No annual fee
- Ultimate Rewards worth 1.5 times original value when redeemed for travel
- $100 bonus when you spend $500 within your first three months
- Minimum credit score of 700 needed to be approved
Free Meals For Kids
Right now Olive Garden is holding their Little Italy Promotion. On Tuesdays from 5 PM – 8 PM, there’s a table set just for little children. Each child gets a free Italian sugar-dusted donut, a great way to get dessert at no cost. Not only that, but each time your child attends they get a stamp on a Little Italy Big Shot card. Get 4 stamps and you treat your family to a free order of Zeppoli.
Keep in mind that this promotion is only temporary and only at specific locations. If you’re uncertain as to whether it’s available at an Olive Garden near you, be sure to call in first. Be sure to stay tuned for other kids promotions that come up.
BeFrugal has a great selection of daily restaurant deals. Taking a quick glance shows us that we can get a kids meal for $1, and we can also use a buy one get one for $12.99 coupon. These offers are updated almost on the daily, so be sure to check right before you’re headed to the restaurant.
If you’re looking to get the Pasta Pass, be sure to act quickly. If it’s anything like last year, all 21,000 passes will be sold out in a matter of seconds. For those that don’t end up getting it, there’s still an auction on 21 remaining passes in which all of the cash goes to charity. Otherwise, use the money saving tips that we outlined in this article.
If you have any questions or any other tips for saving at Olive Garden or any other restaurant for that matter, we’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Thanks for reading and happy frugaling!