By Jared Gomes
Explore Edmonton is offering a new free service for discounts on downtown restaurants.
The Downtown Dining Pass is a free mobile passport that allows you to get discounts at local restaurants. Each establishment puts forward their own discount or incentive that is offered through the service.
Leah Paterson, Manager of Online Content for Explore Edmonton said, “it’s obviously been a hard time for restaurants with the pandemic and so we wanted to find something to help multiple restaurants at one time and encourage people to support local, which has really been our goal throughout this whole pandemic.”
Over 13 restaurants are currently participating, including CRAFT Beer Market, Central Social Hall, DOSC Restaurant and more are being added.
“There is a wide variety from cafes to casual eateries to more of a fine dining kind of atmosphere,” Paterson said.
The pass initially launched on February 8 but Explore Edmonton originally wanted to launch earlier. Their goal was to help support restaurants with the slow season they go through after Christmas.
With restrictions in place, they had to shift their plans. They encouraged restaurants to include takeout deals in the pass so that it could be viable for people in lockdown, with options for dining in when it became possible.
As to when the pass ends, Paterson said, “Right now, we don’t have an expiration date but because it’s digital, participating restaurants can opt in or opt out any time. So, as we see the pass evolving over time and changing, maybe the deals will change or maybe the participating restaurants but we don’t have a firm end date as of right now.”
Paterson said that they have been receiving a positive response from the restaurants as well as the public.
“We have a few thousand sign-ups so far, and then people have been checking into the restaurants, and because it’s digital all you need to do is click redeem,” said Paterson.
In the future Explore Edmonton said they have plans to branch out to other areas of the city as well as to support other industries.
All discounts offered are delivered through text and email for free. To get the pass, sign up on the website.