Urban Legends

McDonalds Coupon for Fat Customers

The Legend

A friend of mine was visiting McDonalds for lunch, and she was so offended by what happened to her that she wrote to the company. Here's what happened:

My friend was at the counter at McDonalds ordering a #7 meal, which is two double cheeseburgers, a large fries, and a large Coke. Everything was fine and everyone seemed friendly. Then my friend took her tray to a booth and started eating. When she lifted her fries, she found a coupon for a free salad that said, "Hey fatty! Try a salad next time."

Well, my friend is about 280, but she's proportionate and doesn't look bad. She got really upset that McDonalds would pass judgment on her looks just to give her a coupon as part of some stupid sales gimmick. She wrote to the company and got back a letter saying that they apologized if she felt offended, but that nothing personal was meant. They were just trying to get the restaurant a more healthful image, and that getting their customers in shape would be helpful for that. They also sent her coupons for five free Big Mac's, which my friend used on her next visit.

The important thing here is that McDonalds never apologized, and are continuing their judgmental campaign. To fight this, I'm asking all my friends to do two things. First, pass this e-mail on to everyone you know so that they'll know the truth about McDonalds. And second, write to or call McDonalds' corporate office and tell them that what happened to my friend happened to you, even if you have to tell a little fib, it's for the greater good. Doing this will help them see how many people they offended, plus they'll send you the free burger coupons.

Don't let the arches get away with it!!!

Behind the Legend

We were unable to locate the specific individual to whom this incident occurred. However, McDonalds certainly is attempting to appeal to health-conscious consumers, and has introduced such products as the high-calorie salad and the not-necessarily-vegetarian veggie burger.

There is indeed a McDonalds coupon somewhat similar to the one described in the above legend. It is available for the asking at participating McDonalds franchises, or may be printed out at home and used in a store (see a copy below). McDonalds employees have been instructed not to offer these coupons to customers no matter how they look, but whether this is in reaction to a specific incident or is because they are worried about offending (in a McDonald's publicist's words) "the tubby army" is unknown.

McDonald's free salad coupon example

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