“Regular” Size Apparently Doesn’t Fit Into The Idea Of “3conomics”.

So I’m picking up lunch at Wendy’s this morning, ordering my usual for there — a #1 combo.  Simple enough.  The woman taking my order asks me in return the following.

“Medium or large?”

I bit my lip for a second and then answered back, “Uh … neither?”

You see, there is a regular size for the combo meals at Wendy’s — the medium and large sizes are upgrades that cost additional to the price of the combo meal.  I’ve been used to hearing the popular phrase, “Would you like to upsize that for only an additional X amount” — or something close along those lines when I’m ordering food, but only recently have I been met with the request to simply choose how much I want to upsize, with the implication that I don’t have any choice in the matter as to whether or not to spend the extra 50 cents or so.

I’m not a big guy, and my appetite isn’t one for huge extra-value meals anyway, so I’m just fine with my regular-sized drink and fries, thank you very much.  While it’s a smart sales technique on the part of the person taking the order, there’s something misleading about giving the customer the impression that medium is the smallest (and cheapest) default order size you can get with your combo.  Most customers, I gather, don’t even catch the fact they’re getting the more expensive order size, as I’ve never heard anyone else in line with me (when I’m inside) correcting the person taking their order.

What piqued my curiosity today was that I heard this sales-pitch for the first time at the Wendy’s near my house — all of my previous experiences had been at the store near my wife’s former job.  I had assumed that the tactic was something only being taught in that store — but today’s experience makes me wonder if Wendy’s is teaching the technique to all of its employees, in a somewhat shady attempt to raise revenue.  Anyone else around the country like to weigh in if they’re hearing the same practice near them?

Up-selling is perfectly okay — so long as you’re upfront to the customer about their options.  This technique doesn’t fit that description, and as silly as it might sound to you, it’s enough of an irritation to make me think of looking elsewhere when I get lunch on the go.  It’s not like there’s not a lot of other options out there.


4 Responses to ““Regular” Size Apparently Doesn’t Fit Into The Idea Of “3conomics”.”

  1. sprentiss47 Says:

    They do the same thing up here in NJ. Medium or large…no mention of regular size.

  2. rollthebones Says:

    Great, now I’m hungry. Make mine a large, please.

  3. thelasthonestman Says:

    They do the same thing up here in NJ. Medium or large…no mention of regular size.

    Aha! So it is a corporate directive — or at least it looks like that. I can’t imagine it’s a coincidence –and we’re too far apart for it to be the same district or regional manager having his people follow that directive — so it must be coming from the higher levels of the chain.

  4. […] I know I’ve complained before about their up-selling tactics — but they’re the only ones serving lunch at this point, so I didn’t have much of […]

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