Dad’s Day Out: How Restaurants Can Attract Father’s Day Diners

fathers day in restaurant

It should come as no surprise that the two busiest days of the year for restaurants are Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. But do you know what comes in third on the list?

It’s Father’s Day.

The folks over at the Toast Restaurant Management Blog recently published a handy post about how restaurants can attract families looking for ways to celebrate Dad. Did you know that more than 50 million Americans head to restaurants on Father’s Day … and 10 percent of them will dine out for more than one meal?

Before you go “all in” on an elaborate promotional campaign, here’s one stat to keep in mind: according to the National Restaurant Association, the majority of Father’s Day diners aren’t influenced by specials. The good news is that the rest of them are, and it’s up to you to make sure your promotion is targeted, appealing, and unique.

The NRA also tells us that the timing of Father’s Day celebrations is different from what we saw on Mother’s Day. Families are more likely to celebrate Mom with a breakfast or lunch, while Father’s Day festivities are more likely to take place in the evening:

  • 67% of Father’s Day diners plan to go out for an evening meal.
  • 24% plan to take Dad out for lunch.
  • 10% plan to enjoy a family brunch.
  • 11% plan to dine out for breakfast.

The team at the Toast blog goes on to put together a handy list of eight promotion ideas for attracting new guests and appreciating repeat customers, including

  1. Letting dads eat free
  2. Specials just for grandfathers
  3. Free desserts for dads
  4. A special concert or event
  5. Free promotional items
  6. Custom gift sets including a gift card, a restaurant t-shirt, and other goodies
  7. Gift cards for dads who come in on Father’s Day
  8. Fun with “bad dad jokes”

Of course, #5 on their list is our favorite, and we’ve got a few ideas of our own for promotional gifts to help you tap into Father’s Day festivities:fathers day promotion idea free beer glass

  • Bottoms Up: Give Dad a limited-edition Father’s Day beer glass to take home after their feast. He’ll remember you every time he takes a sip of his favorite brew.
  • Fore! Show your appreciation to golf-loving dads by offering a free polo shirt, or golf towel as they wrap up their Father’s Day meals.
  • Go-Go Gadget: Guys love cool gizmos, so how about sending Dad home with a clip-on pocket tool … or making him the envy of the office with a clever tech gadget that incorporates a pen, phone easel, LED flashlight, stylus and carabiner keychain?


How is your restaurant getting ready to win big with Father’s Day diners? Tell us about it in the comments!



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