We’ve all faced the dilemma: should we go out to a restaurant with our children or not?

Gemma kids

Gemma kids

Please note: MyFamilyClub Dining Club will be discontinued from 1 September 2013.

We’ve all faced the dilemma: should we go out to a restaurant with our children or not?

It’s not an easy one to answer.

There’s always that risk of toddler tantrums, for a start – Afro Baby has perfected this art, while I seem to spend my life chasing Spaghetti Legs (my five-year-old) up and down stairs and away from places that he really shouldn’t be.

But the bigger issue for me is that whenever they eat, children always seem to leave quite a bit of food on their plates. And when you’re faced with paying restaurant prices for that food, this can be the one thing that puts you off venturing out.

This really bothers me – because I think it’s lovely to be able to get out with the little ones. It’s a chance for us all to get away from the TV, the DIY, the cleaning and all the other distractions at home. And in our hectic lives, where we juggle work commitments with food shopping and ferrying the kids to football/ballet/drama practice, it’s a chance for everyone to sit down together, and enjoy a proper family meal.

That’s exactly why I’ve launched the MyFamilyClub Dining Club!

What is the Dining Club?

The Dining Club will save you money on eating out at 200 participating restaurants across the UK. We’ve bagged all sorts of brilliant deals, including free desserts, 20% off your bill – and at some restaurants kids eat free!

But – and it’s a big ‘but’! – you don’t even have to take the kids! As a member of the Dining Club, you can take just your partner or your friends, and still get great discounts.

The full list of restaurants and offers can be found here.

How do I join the Dining Club?

The Dining Club is bundled in with our Savings Pack. If you haven’t heard of the Savings Pack, click here to read all about it. For just £9.95 a year, it gives you discounts of between 4% and 10% at five different stores of your choice from our range. It’s fantastic… I’ve worked out that I’m saving £72 a year at Boots and £30-£40 a year at M&S (and that’s not including at Christmas)!

For that same £9.95, you can get all those discounts PLUS a year’s membership to the Dining Club thrown in.

How do I find a participating restaurant and use my discount?

If you’ve bought your Savings Pack you’ll get access to a special restaurant finder online (in My Account). Just enter your postcode, and it’ll tell you which restaurants near you have Dining Club deals and what they are. Then you simply print off a voucher, call the restaurant to book your table quoting ‘MyFamilyClub’, and show the voucher at the restaurant to get your discount.

Is it really worth the money?

Yes, absolutely – I really think it is. £9.95 barely gets you a burger and chips in a restaurant these days! It’ll probably pay for itself on your first trip out! My husband and I are both working parents, and we see it as a great incentive to spend some time together just the two of us, as the savings on the meal typically cover what we’d pay for a babysitter.

You can also find out what’s near the restaurant so that you can make a real day of it, taking the kids to a nearby park, or going for a romantic stroll in the woods with your other half. And don’t forget you’ll also get discounts year-round at a range of high-street shops, which is another benefit in our Savings Pack.

All in all, I think it’s an investment that you really won’t regret.

To access the MyFamilyClub kids eat free deals and other restaurant vouchers, sign up for our Savings Pack today!