Fast food- fast but not cheap

31 Jul

This past week my son attended a hockey camp in the city near us. We had to be in the city by 6:00 pm for the five days which meant we were traveling over the supper hour. We usually left early enough to grab him some food one the way to the rink. Eating at that many fast food restaurants in such a short time frame, really opened my eyes to the fact that not all fast food joints are the same when it comes to pricing. Usually when you think of fast food, you think cheap and quick. Well, maybe quick, but definitely not cheap.
Monday we ate at mcdonalds. My son had a burger meal and I had a salad and drink. $18 later, we left.
The next day we opted for Tim Hortons. I had a bagel with cream cheese and a coffee. $3.83. Wowzers! Now, that’s more like it. My son, of course, had McDonald’s again. Six something for his meal.
The next day I had all three kids with me. We decided to try out Wendy’s restaurant as we have never eaten there before. I was amazed that I fed all 4 of us for $13.81. I couldn’t believe it. I found out later that all kids meals are on sale for summer for $2.99. Not only was it the same size as any other fast food chain, it came with a great toy. A much better toy in fact than the dinky little figurines McDonald’s frequently gives out with their meals. I had a wrap and a huge baked potato. I really felt wee got good value for our money as everyone left full and satisfied.
To keep things I perspective, the previous weekend our whole family of 5 had eaten at A&W. We had a gift certificate for $25 and it still cost us $13 out of our pocket. $38 for fast food for the whole family??? Not bloody likely!
Last month we had eaten at a diner type restaurant where we fed the whole family for $43 plus a tip. Because we ordered “real” food and not greasy deep fried food and the portions are decent we only ordered 3 entres and the two girls we able to eat off our plates.
Even though it takes a little more time to go in and sit for a restaurant meat, I know at the end we will all be full and not end up having to grab a snack later on. I’ll try to remember that when I want to eat quickly on the go in the future.
Most times we opt for quick fast food because it’s easier with 3 small kids, it’s quicker which also means its easier, and we can eat on the go. However, after this past week we will have to seriously weigh out which is more important, saving time or saving money. If we chose money, we will lose the time and vice versa.
If we choose to eat at fast food, I will keep in mind that I should look for a Wendy’s or Tim Horton’s before a McDonalds or an A&W, which works for me too because those are also the menus with more healthy choices.


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