McDonald's is considering a $5 meal to win back customers. Here's what you'd get.

McDonald's is considering a $5 meal to win back customers. Here's what you'd get.

McDonald's Considers $5 Meal

McDonald's Considers $5 Meal

McDonald's is considering adding a $5 meal to its menu across the U.S. as a way to coax customers back into its restaurants, according to a source familiar with the plans.

The meal could include a choice of either a McChicken, a McDouble or four-piece chicken nuggets as well as fries and a drink, the person told CBS MoneyWatch. Leaders at McDonald's corporate offices are still in talks with franchise owners about introducing the $5 meal, the source said.

The discussions about rolling out a new budget meal come just weeks after McDonald's executives reported slower growth in foot traffic at its restaurants. Some inflation-weary customers are cutting back on fast-food dining after many chains, ranging from McDonald's to Subway, have boosted prices in recent years to offset higher labor and ingredient costs.

The company has to be "laser-focused" on keeping prices affordable to convince customers to return, McDonald's CEO Chris Kempczinski said during an April 30 earnings call with analysts and investors.

Among all U.S. fast food chains, McDonald's raised its menu prices the most between 2014 and 2024, according to personal finance website FinanceBuzz. About 25% of people who make under $50,000 are cutting back on fast food, pointing to cost as a concern, a January poll by consulting firm Revenue Management Solutions found.

Restaurant chains point to rising labor costs as a key factor driving up prices. Still, industry analysts said fast food chains need to court low-income customers if they wish to continue hitting revenue and earnings projections.

To be sure, a $5 meal wouldn't necessarily make McDonald's a pioneer in the fast food industry. In 2015, Wendy's introduced the 4 for $4 meal that includes a small hamburger, four-piece chicken nuggets, small fries and a small drink, and in 2019, the restaurant added its $5 Biggie Bag. The latter deal includes a choice of sandwich, four chicken nuggets, a small order of fries and a small drink.

McDonald's, the nation's largest fast food chain, employs more than 2 million people at its 14,300 restaurants, and another 150,000 employees at its corporate offices.

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