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ENTERTAINMENT | Feb 28

Wendy’s Is About to Lose a Bunch of Clients

Wendy’s Will Begin Testing Out a Surge Pricing Model Next Year and People Are Not Happy

Wendy’s Plan to Test Surge Pricing Sucks
Wendy's logo sign/Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via AFP

Not Cool, Wendy’s! Not Cool…

I hate to be an alarmist, but what will be next? The beloved Costco hotdog?

Yikes. This is not good news.

Wendy’s has sparked outrage in fast food news by announcing their plan to adopt a “surge pricing” model, similar to Uber, during peak hours of operation. This means that grabbing Wendy’s chicken nuggets or baconator on your lunch break will cost more depending on what time you dine.

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Wendy’s menu has already been crowned as the most expensive in 2022, but it seems they are still not satisfied. The company’s CEO, Kirk Tanner, shared this strategy with investors, announcing a $20 million investment in menu boards that can instantly update prices without incurring additional costs.


“Beginning as early as 2025, we will begin testing more enhanced features like dynamic pricing and daypart offerings, along with AI-enabled menu changes and suggestive selling,” Wendy’s CEO Kirk Tanner said in a conference call earlier this month. “As we continue to show the benefit of this technology in our company-operated restaurants, franchisee interest in digital menu boards should increase, further supporting sales and profit growth across the system.”

Ultimately, this model just doesn’t sit right with the public. Instead of “dynamic pricing,” Wendy’s should have increased all prices initially and then introduced a “Happy Hour” menu to make customers believe they were getting a deal (just like they do at sit-down restaurants).

We’ve all seen the backlash with services like Airbnb tacking on exorbitant fees, Uber implementing surge pricing, and tipping culture being out of control. It’s caused people to turn back to traditional options like hotels, taxis, and cooking at home. However, buying groceries and cooking at home is no longer an affordable option either.


We may have to resort to even older-school methods like growing our own food, biking to work, and camping while traveling. Personally, I think it’s time to go to the post-World War era and start planting our own community gardens and growing our food.

The more significant concern here is that other fast-food chains may follow suit, making this type of pricing the new norm. I hate to be an alarmist, but what will be next? The beloved Costco hotdog? That will be the true sign of our crumbling society.

Sigh. At least my go-to Taco Bell order is safe (for now).

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