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Does Denny's Take EBT? A Guide To Denny's Payment Methods

Written by: Dane Groves
Last updated: November 2, 2023

EBT cards are accepted at numerous restaurants and stores, with more adding to the list everyday. Does Denny's take EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer)? This question is often asked by EBT cardholders looking to dine at one of America's favorite family-friendly restaurants.

Here we provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date information on this topic, as well as explore other payment options that may be available at Denny's.

What Is EBT And How Does It Work?

Before we dive into the specifics of Denny's payment methods, let's first understand what EBT is and how it works. EBT, or Electronic Benefits Transfer, is a system that allows recipients of government assistance programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), to access their benefits electronically.

EBT cards are similar to debit cards and can be used at participating retailers and grocery stores to purchase eligible food items. However, EBT cards are generally not accepted at restaurants, with a few exceptions made for certain states and programs.

Does Denny's Take EBT Cards?

What most people relying on food stamps ask is, “does Denny's take EBT Payments?” Denny's, a popular American diner-style restaurant chain, does accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) payments via Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) under specific circumstances. According to First Quarter Finance, EBT payments can be utilized at select Denny's locations in California for eligible customers participating in the Restaurant Meals Program (RMP). However, there are additional restrictions and eligibility criteria to consider.

The RMP, a state option facilitated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, allows certain SNAP recipients to purchase prepared meals at participating restaurants using their SNAP benefits. To be eligible for the RMP, SNAP recipients must reside in a state offering the program, and all household members must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Be 60 years of age or older

  • Have a disability

  • Be homeless

  • Be a spouse of a SNAP client who is eligible for the RMP

It is important to note that EBT cards cannot typically be used outside of the RMP to purchase prepared meals at restaurants.

California currently offers the EBT restaurant meals option in select counties, including:

  • Alameda

  • Los Angeles

  • Sacramento

  • San Francisco

  • San Luis Obispo

  • Santa Clara

  • Santa Cruz

As RMP partnerships are subject to change, verifying the most up-to-date information through your county's dedicated EBT/RMP website or by contacting your local Denny's or benefits administration office is essential.

When planning to use your CalFresh benefits at a participating Denny's location, make sure to inform your server about your intention to pay with EBT. Once you receive the bill, use your EBT card in the same manner as a credit or debit card. As long as you have a sufficient amount on your EBT, your benefits may cover the full meal. According to First Quarter Finance, if your EBT balance is insufficient, you can typically cover the remaining amount using cash, credit, or debit.

Using EBT At Denny’s

So, does Denny's take EBT? Select Denny's locations in California do accept EBT payments from eligible SNAP recipients participating in the RMP. However, checking your eligibility and available EBT balance and participating in Denny's locations are crucial before planning a visit. EBT cardholders interested in using their benefits at restaurants should explore their state's Restaurant Meals Program (RMP) and look for participating establishments that cater to their needs.

Discover what you can buy with EBT cash benefits by visiting Gov Relations and checking out our guides and resources.

Dane Groves
Dane Groves is the senior writer of Gov Relations. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from National University. During Dane’s whole five years with the company, he has helped train and guide new writers. Dane works closely with Dulcie to ensure that new writers are able to produce content that is of high quality and engaging, relevant, and informative to readers.
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