Field trips give students educational experiences away from their regular school environment. Popular field trip sites include zoos, nature centers, community agencies such as fire stations and hospitals, government agencies, local businesses and science museums.
But what about a field trip to your local restaurant? A restaurant field trip can awaken the desire in a child to try new foods, pursue a previously unconsidered career or spark a new interest or passion in cooking. Restaurant field trips not only provide alternative educational opportunities for children, but also benefit the local businesses that they visit.
Here is a list of 20 Restaurants in Southern California and nationwide that offer field trips for students including homeschoolers, school groups and scout troops.
If you want to set up a tour, you need to contact the individual restaurant location in your area and ask to speak with the general manager directly. Since most of the restaurants on this list are franchised own, some owners may offer a tour, some may not. It is completely up to the individual owner if they want to offer group tours. So all you can do is call and ask!
Cost also varies. Some restaurants offer a behind-the-scenes tour along with a child-size meal for a flat fee, while others offer a completely FREE experience. Just be sure to ask about the cost when you call.
Most of all have fun and enjoy the educational experience with your students!
20 Restaurant Field Trips for Kids
Auntie Anne’s (Nationwide)
Want to roll and twist your very own pretzel? Auntie Anne’s offers Pretzel Field Trips at select locations. They make sure the content of the program matches the age and interest level of your group. During a tour, learn the history of pretzels and how Auntie Anne’s came to be, roll your own pretzel with real dough and enjoy a delicious, hot, golden brown Original Pretzel & Lemonade.
Bring your group to take a “behind the scenes” tour of your local Applebee’s restaurant, learning about different staff positions and duties, food safety, following a recipe and more! Students, teachers and chaperones alike will then enjoy a delicious lunch in the dining room.
Designed for Grades K-5, students pay just $5 each (incl. a Grilled Cheese or Chicken Finger Kid’s Meal & Kid’s Ice Cream Sundae) and chaperones pay $8 each (incl. a choice of any Pick ‘N Pair lunch combo and a fountain beverage) and the teacher receives the same adult lunch on us!
To commemorate their experience, each student will receive a certificate naming them a “Junior Applebuddy” with an attached coupon to return for a FREE Kid’s Meal on their next visit! Restaurant tours are generally available Tuesday – Thursday mornings. To determine a location’s availability or schedule a tour, please contact the General Manager at your local Applebee’s restaurant.
Benihana offers a fun cultural experience for children! Groups sit together at a special table with a grill in the middle and are given a few different meal options. The manager then shares a little bit of history about the restaurant and then lets the chefs run the show! The chefs are very entertaining and funny. At the end, children receive a free meal certificate to come back again.