Burger King launches $5 a month coffee subscription

Photo: lawcain (Getty Images)

Today, Burger King announced a new program that seems likely to disrupt the already contentious fast food breakfast war, which sees brands continually try to one-up or troll each other, all in hopes of grabbing a little piece of a pie that has largely been dominated by McDonald’s.

This seems like a pretty serious grab: Starting today, users can sign up for the BK Café coffee subscription program (via its app, of course), through which subscribers can get one small brewed coffee per day for a grand total of $5/month.

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That means for February, the shortest month of the year, a daily cup of BK’s Arabica bean coffee would set you back roughly 17 cents per cup. Hell, forget a full month. Let’s take this one that we’re in right now—If you signed up for this thing right this second, then paid BK a visit at any time today (per a press release shared with The Takeout, it’s not just a morning thing) you could in theory get 17 cups of coffee before the end of the month, each costing you about 29 cents.

We kept looking for a catch here, and there really isn’t one. As is the case with promotions for most large chains, this one is billed as “at participating locations,” but a representative for Burger King confirmed to The Takeout that it’s every BK location outside of Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. (Sorry, Honolulu, you’ll just have to content yourselves with living in paradise.) Our next thought was that it’s probably a limited-time thing, designed to get people to BK as much as possible within a short window of time (à la the elusive McRib and Nacho Fry). But that doesn’t seem to be the case, either; a representative would not confirm that the program is indefinite, but did state that there is “no announced end date.”

The only rub would seem to be that users are required to redeem through the BK app, so if you’re generally anti-apps, that might be a deal-breaker. We much prefer the Wendy’s method here (Frosty keychain > brands taking up precious storage space on your phone, asking for location access, etc.) but as hoops-to-jump-through go, this one is pretty tame.

That said, it’s not like this program is an act of benevolence. The coffee deal absolutely exists to get you to in that Burger King drive-thru, where you can be drawn in by warmly-lit photos of the Sourdough King and slow-motion video of icing oozing off a Cini Mini. And BK has almost zero street cred for its coffee (why go there when Dunkin and Starbucks are more readily available?). McDonald’s has an edge on almost all areas of breakfast; Taco Bell’s not doing so bad either; Starbucks is Starbucks. So this seems like a novel and a good deal but will people take to it?

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All that’s left is to try Burger King’s coffee, which we have never had. We’ll let you know when we do.

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About the author

Allison Shoemaker

Contributor, The A.V. Club and The Takeout. Allison loves television, bourbon, and dramatically overanalyzing social interactions.