McDonald’s Dollar Menu No More, Chain Bumping Prices Up

The McDonald’s Dollar Menu is about to become a thing of the past… and as we’ve come to expect from big companies, the chain is replacing it with a slightly more expensive thing with a clever name.

Truth be told, the McDonald’s Dollar Menu is really a loss leader, but also not the be all and end all of McDonald’s deals. There’s always some super cheap thing to be had, from Kids’ Meal sales to the current promotion of two Sausage Egg McMuffins for $3 — cheaper than buying a single. Woot woot!

But the McDonald’s Dollar Menu is now morphing into something else… the McDonald’s Dollar Menu & More. Given what it is, it might actually be more aptly named the McDonald’s Dollar Menu & More… Dollars. Because the stuff is slightly pricier!

We don’t know if it is a sign of a stronger economy that can pay more for a McRib, or a weaker economy that insists upon going into McDonald’s and getting two Daily Doubles and a cup of water, but the chain is tweaking its prices.

The new Dollar Menu will be tier-based, with the $1-2 items on the first tier of value items. It’s not clear what the second might be, and the third will have the 20 piece Chicken McNuggets box for $5, the price currently available.

AdAge reports that the new changes to the Dollar Menu are an attempt to resolve rising commodity costs and bargain pricing for certain items at McDonald’s:

“The menu makes room for what the company calls ‘pricing flexibility’ for items like the McDouble, a product that caused friction between franchisees and corporate. In 2008, McDonald’s and franchisees were at odds over the double cheeseburger. Franchisees wanted it off the dollar menu in light of rising commodity costs and what they said was a decrease in profitability. In the end, the compromise was the McDouble, a burger with one slice of cheese (instead of two) and two patties.”

The new focus comes after the soft reception seen for premium item Mighty Wings — which were priced at a buck a wing and failed to draw many dollar-minded consumers.

CEO Don Thompson explained that while the wings were competitively priced, they were not so much affordable to a dollar menu consumer — and they really were quite spicy:

“One dollar per wing was still not considered to be the most competitive in the current environment. The other thing we saw, and it’s a very slight modification, the flavor profile is slightly spicy for some consumers.”

McDonalds’ Dollar Menu will be replaced with the McDonald’s Dollar Menu & More on November 4.