20 Chain Restaurants with Fundraising Opportunities for School Trips

photo: http://www.arbysrestaurant.com/

You need to fundraise for your upcoming educational trip. You also need to eat. Fortunately, many restaurants let you do both!


Host your next trip meeting at a local restaurant, while earning 10-20% of the nights’ receipts for your designated 501(c)(3) charity. Publicize the fundraising event through school announcements, posting on your class website, signage at school or in your community, or marking the date on the school calendar. Some restaurants will even print flyers for you!

It’s a win-win for the restaurant and the community. The restaurant fills seats on a normally slow night (Mon-Thurs) and may even attract new customers. You are able to host a meeting, eat dinner, fundraise, and build the trip community. Talk about efficient!

So where can you both eat and earn the dough? Below are 20 chain restaurants that offer school fundraising opportunities:

  1. Applebee’s
  2. Arby’s
  3. Boston Market
  4. Bruster’s
  5. California Pizza Kitchen
  6. Cheesecake Factory
  7. Chili’s
  8. Chipotle
  9. Friendly’s
  10. Fuddruckers
  11. Max and Erma’s
  12. Outback Steakhouse
  13. Panda Express
  14. Panera
  15. Pizzeria Uno
  16. Ponderosa
  17. Red Robin
  18. Subway
  19. T.G.I.Friday’s
  20. Wendy’s

What else can you do to make the fundraising event successful?

  • Consider hosting on consecutive nights if you are from a very large school. This will cut-down on long wait times as well as overwhelming the staff.
  • Host multiple events, but at different restaurants. This will accommodate varied food interests and continue raising money for your program.
  • Hold no more than one event a month. This should maintain interest and participation.
  • Host the event on a night when an exam isn’t scheduled for the next day.

Additional Fundraising Resources:


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  1. I am interested in fundraising opportunities for a group of girl scouts who are heading to England in the summer of 2014 for an International Camping Event…any information would be helpful

  2. Hello Maryellen,

    What a wonderful opportunity for your Girl Scouts! We are not a fundraising company, but rather specialize in school group travel for groups like yourself! We do have a great library of fundraising ideas for our travelers that you may find helpful. Please visit http://www.scholasticatravel.com/category/fundraising-2/

    Great ideas, pictures, and articles are always popping up on our Facebook page. We post about once a day (very low key). Please join us! https://www.facebook.com/ScholasticaTravel

  3. This will definitely help my poms team get to perform at the orange bowl this year!! Thanks!!

  4. We’re so happy that you found this article useful! Please let us know if you would like assistance planning your travel for the orange bowl. Congrats on the performance opportunity! That’s huge! 🙂

  5. This is awesome. Does this apply to non-profits like a church as well?

  6. Thanks for reading Rudy! We’re happy that you find it helpful. You will need to check with the individual restaurants, but most will work with any non-profit with 501c3 status.

  7. I work with California Pizza Kitchen in Chesterfield. I spend my day reaching out to the community trying to find ways we can help! We hold Fundraisers for non profits . We can set up a fundraiser for just about anyone! Schools, churches, sports teams, charities,shelters, you name it! We donate 20% of the funds from the fundraiser back to you! It’s easy to set up .
    If you have questions you can email me at

  8. Very nice tips. Thanks for sharing this.

  9. Pat and Oscars in Temecula will host fundraisers as well!! We give back up to 20% of all proceeds to your charity/organizations! It’s minimal work for you, but we have a high success rate!!

  10. I am the GM for Pitfire Pizza in Downtown Los Angeles; we’re currently looking for more non-profit organizations to help in our community! I can donate items for auctions (usually gift cards, maybe t-shirts and caps to make a basket) or host fundraiser nights giving back up to 15% of food/drinks purchased (or both!) at my restaurant’s location. Please contact me for info and questions!

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