McDonald’s Says $18 Big Mac Meal was ‘Exception’ After Social Media Buzz Exaggerates Price Increase

By Jose Resurreccion

May 29, 2024 10:46 PM EDT

McDonald’s Says $18 Big Mac Meal was ‘Exception’ After Social Media Buzz Exaggerates Price Increase
The facade of a McDonald s fast food restaurant in Clamart on May 3, 2024.
(Photo : MAGALI COHEN/Hans Lucas/AFP via Getty Images)

McDonald's has spoken about reports and social media posts claiming to exaggerate its price increases. 

In a message on its website Wednesday (May 29), the fastfood giant's president of operations in the United States, Joe Erlinger, said that reports suggesting the price of its Big Mac meal had doubled since 2019 were false and that it was the company's "responsibility" to be transparent to its customers. 

The company stressed that the average US Big Mac was $4.39 in 2019, while it only cost 20.5% more in 2024 at $5.29, significantly lower than the $18 price some news reports and social media posts suggest.

READ NEXT: McDonald's Adds New 'Grandma McFlurry' to Its Dessert Menu for Limited Time

McDonald's Calls $18 Big Mac Meal Frustrating

Erlinger was quoted by the Associated Press saying that McDonald's acknowledged the frustration of franchisees when a post on X, formerly Twitter, last year about a Big Mac meal in Connecticut costing $18. He insisted that the price was "an exception" compared to the average Big Mac meal price and that he and his franchisees are "work[ing] hard to minimize the impact of price increases."

McDonald's said that the average price of all its menu items rose by 40%  over the past five years, which accounts for a 40% average increase in the cost of labor, paper, and food. According to government figures, the figure was higher than overall consumer prices, which have increased 21% since December 2019. 

In the first three months this year, McDonald's saw a marked slowdown in store traffic due to inflation and customers trying to save money. In response, the company seeks to compensate through more deals. 

Meanwhile, McDonald's is expected to introduce a $5 meal deal across the US containing a burger, a four-piece McNugget serving, small fries, and a small drink. Erlinger hoped the upcoming deals would be "meaningful" to the company's customers. 

Bloomberg further reported that McDonald's and Burger King have recently launched competing $5 meal deals.

READ MORE: $5 McDonald's Meal? New Offering for Low-Income Customers Could Arrive Soon

© 2024 VCPOST, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

Join the Conversation

Real Time Analytics