Here's Why Some Subway Locations Won't Accept Coupons

When it comes to fast food, be it burgers or sandwiches, most customers aren't looking to pay top dollar for a meal. Let's use Subway as an example. You can get a footlong sandwich, some chips, and a drink for a relatively low cost compared to sitting down in a fancy restaurant. Granted, some may argue that the cheap price of the sandwich reflects its ingredients, but at the end of the day, it's a sandwich that's fast, easy, and not going to bust your wallet.

Of course, Subway has come under fire for how it handles its prices on more than a few occasions. A very notable example of this is the chain's famous $5 footlong sandwich promotion which, despite being a popular item at Subways across the nation, increased to $6 to combat rising price costs in 2016 (via Vox). Both employees and customers seem to have noticed that prices are climbing recently, with some on Reddit complaining that the prices of the subs are increasing substantially. Although one can credit the rising prices to recent inflation, Subway itself has been suffering from poor business recently, with the New York Post reporting the chain lost 1,000 locations in 2021. 

Some have tried to push back against the rising prices by using coupons, only to discover that certain Subways aren't accepting them. What could be behind these Subways denying entirely legitimate customer coupons?

Reddit thinks it's a corporate vs franchisee power struggle

On the r/Subway subreddit, u/cu_boom posted an image of a sign outside of a Subway that told customers that "due to economic conditions," the restaurant wouldn't accept coupons. This sent some people, many of whom seemed to also be Subway employees, into a fit of rage. Some blamed business practices, while others actually seemed almost happy to hear about the development.

"Corporate Subway is absolute ****," wrote u/nicetodogs, who seemed decidedly displeased with the way that Subway manages its franchisees. This user complained that corporate Subway takes enormous royalty checks and forces their franchisees to pay out of pocket for remodels. They ended their lengthy rant by claiming that corporate Subway is destroying its own company out of greed. In another reply, u/faanawrt even went so far as to call Subway a pyramid scheme, reporting that corporate does everything it can to make a profit, including a high focus on coupons.

"Yes, owners have the right to not participate in coupons," sympathized u/FX-97. "Being a Subway employee myself, I feel so bad for the employees who are going to be harassed by Karens." In another reply on the thread, a Reddit user congratulated the business owners for standing up for themselves. "Sounds like the franchise owner finally put their foot down and got corporate to ***** off," u/Excellent_General189 wrote. "Good for them."

It would seem that being mad at corporate is just one more thing involved in what it's really like to work at Subway.