Few fast-food dishes are as famous and well-known as the McDonald’s Big Mac. This double-decker burger with its distinctive sauce has charmed taste buds all over the world for decades. However, McDonald’s has recently been mired in a heated controversy over its plan to create a $18 Big Mac Meal.
The Big Mac is going viral again, but this time it’s not because it’s great. Instead, it’s about the cost. McDonald’s – and fast food generally – are well-known for their convenience and inexpensive prices. However, one photo making the rounds on the internet has demonstrated that we’ve wandered far from the dollar menu.
On July 18th, a Twitter user sent a snapshot of a menu at a McDonald’s rest stop in Connecticut. The graphic depicts unusually high pricing for a standard McDonald’s combination meal. A Big Mac with fries and a beverage costs $17.59.
We’re all aware that prices for almost everything are rising these days, and food is no different. Yet, a meal that was previously known for being one of the cheapest and easiest alternatives available has stunned the internet, and with good cause.
“This was at a rest stop, but these McDonald’s prices are nuts, right???” commented the Twitter user. And displayed not only the excessive pricing of the Big Mac combo meal but also the rest of the menu’s exorbitant prices.
According to the photo, a Quarter Pounder with cheese combo meal costs $17.99, and adding bacon raises the price to $18.99. Using a map of McDonald’s costs, the Twitter user feels it is one of the most costly McDonald’s, but why?
Why Are Mcdonald’s Pricing So High These Days?
While your neighborhood McDonald’s may not be the most costly, it is far from cheap. According to The Economist, Big Mac costs have increased 125% since 1996.
So, no of where you go to acquire your Big Mac, it will cost you more than it did previously. In fact, the average price is now 6% higher than it was just two years ago. But why are the costs so vary between locations?
According to CBS News, the pricing difference is due to the chain’s business style. Approximately 90% of McDonald’s restaurants are franchises, with individual owners setting their own rates.
As a result, they’ll charge whatever customers are willing to pay, which is understandable for people who are just passing through and grabbing some quick food at a rest stop.
It’s worth mentioning, though, that Connecticut’s minimum wage is $15, making a nearly $18 Big Mac all the more shocking. Unfortunately, this issue is unlikely to be resolved. So, rather than waiting for Big Mac pricing to return to normal, your best chance is to fly to Mississippi.
They have the cheapest Big Mac in town, at $3.91. Depending on where you live, a trip like that may not constitute the lunch as “fast food” any longer, but hey, it’s not $20.
Thanks for reading. I hope you find it helpful.