These chain restaurants are some of the busiest and most successful in the US. You could probably guess a few of these, but there may be some that surprise you.
We Like It Fast and Easy
The chain-restaurant industry makes billions of dollars every year. Everyone seems to have a favorite spot to hit up, even if we know that this stuff might not be the healthiest. Chain restaurants can be found anywhere and everywhere nowadays, offering fast meals on a budget. Some of the biggest names on this list have even shaped our country and how we eat. That’s a pretty impressive feat for hamburgers and fries.
Who Made the Cut
McDonald’s: This is No. 1, most successful restaurant in America, but that isn’t much of a surprise. The McDonald’s restaurant, as we know it, has been around since 1953.
Brothers Richard and Maurice McDonald worked tirelessly to create the most streamlined and popular place to grab a bite, and boy did they succeed. In 2016 McDonald’s made over $1.3 billion in profit, with a total revenue of $6.62 billion.
Starbucks: In case you weren’t already aware, people love their coffee. Maybe love isn’t the correct word—people need their coffee to function on the most basic human level, and they want that coffee as fast as possible.
Starbucks opened in 1971 and has been cornering the coffee game since. They sit at the No. 2 spot with a 2016 operating income of $4.2 billion.
Subway: This sandwich shop is one of the fastest-growing businesses in the world, with over 44,000 locations in more than 112 countries. In 2016, Subway’s total revenue was over $1.1 billion. However, sales have been declining recently, so this sub shop may not stay at No. 3 for very long.
Taco Bell: As the most popular Mexican food restaurant in America, Taco Bell really does have everyone living mas. Taco Bell has over 7,000 stores (many outside of the U.S.) with average sales of $1.4 million per store. That’s a lot of tacos.
Burger King: Coming in at No. 5 is Burger King. “The King” pulled in over $1 billion in revenue in 2016. They did so by selling tons of everyone’s favorites, such as the Whopper, the Tendergrill Chicken Sandwich, and of course, the Whopper Jr. Thank goodness they have enough money to keep those paper crowns around.
An Expensive Habit
The average American spends a lot of money on dining experiences. Maurie Backman, a personal finance writer, shared a staggering number with The Motley Fool:
“From 2015 to 2016, for the first time in history, Americans spent more money at bars and restaurants ($54.857 billion) than they did on groceries ($52.503 billion).”
What can we say? Americans like to eat, and we don’t want to clean up for ourselves. However, $54 billion is a lot of money to spend on fast food. It makes so much more financial sense to cook at home, even if it’s not as easy.
If you think you’re spending too much on takeout, try cutting down to a day or two per week. You don’t need to go cold turkey to see a difference in your cash flow. Or, potentially, your blood flow.