Monday, June 24, 2024

Customers Vent as Applebee’s Sells Out of $200 Weekly ‘Date Night’ Passes

'Thank you to our fans for their interest in our Applebee’s Date Night Pass—the response far exceeded our expectations, as the passes sold out in one minute...'

(Molly Bruns, Headline USA) Country star Walker Hayes’s hit song “Fancy Like” may suggest that even the most blue-collar couple can enjoy the “bougie” lifestyle at Applebee’s.

However, it turns out that the ubiquitous Neighborhood Grill + Bar may be more exclusive than people realize.

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the restaurant chain recently ran a promotion selling yearlong “date night” passes, which sold out minutes after sales opened at noon EST on Monday.

The passes cost $200 on their website, allowing a few lucky customers to get $30 worth of food and non-alcoholic beverages up to 52 times between Feb. 1, 2024 and Jan. 31, 2025, according to NBC 9 News.

Assuming the full $30 discount was applied every week for the entire year, the total value of the pass would be $1,560—not covering gratuity, taxes and, of course, alcohol.

The company announced that passes sold out “due to popular demand,” shortly after the sale went live on the website.

Several disgruntled customers took to social media to report website malfunctions and to bemoan the apparent shortage of passes.

“Within the span of probably 30 seconds the Applebee’s date night pass was in my cart available and then sold out,” one Twitter user said.

“Literally spamming refresh on @Applebees for the date night and didn’t even see the option to purchase one,” another user said. “What’d they sell, like 5 of them?”

In response, another user said the page linked to a Shopify store, and guessed that some people managed to get the Shopify link before it was publicly available on the website.

Several people complained that the website crashed right as the sale went live, and they never got the chance to see the purchase button.

Applebee’s executives explained that the number of passes available was very limited, and thanked their customers for their excitement over the promotion.

“Thank you to our fans for their interest in our Applebee’s Date Night Pass—the response far exceeded our expectations, as the passes sold out in one minute,” the statement continued.

Despite the complaints, several Twitter users were enthusiastic about the promotion and said they would gladly continue to go to Applebee’s.

According to a survey by Match.com, spending on dates is up by 40% from the past decade, effectively killing the first-date dinner as more single people opt for a cup of coffee or a walk in the park.

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