Taco Bell Is Testing Out A 30-Day Taco Subscription Service. Here's How To Try It

If you are in Tucson, Arizona, for the next couple of months, you can try out the test run for Taco Bell's latest idea: Taco Lover's Pass. The idea, as explained in an email sent to Mashed, is that for a monthly subscription, users unlock a free taco every day when ordering through the Taco Bell app. The tacos you can choose are the Crunchy Taco, Spicy Potato Soft Taco, Crunchy Supreme Taco, Soft Supreme Taco, Doritos Locos Tacos, and the Doritos Locos Tacos Supreme. 

You read that right. You can have a free Doritos Locos Taco every day for a subscription of $5 or $10, depending on your location. However, the fine print states that any additions or ingredients swapped except for non-black beans will cost you.

According to the Taco Lover's Pass page on the Taco Bell website, this test will run until November 24. So, there is plenty of time for the residents of Tucson to discover whether this deal is worth it. 

Why would Taco Bell do this?

For fans of Taco Bell, even the possibility of absurdly cheap tacos might sound too good to be true. After all, after five trips to Taco Bell, you will have eaten more than $10 worth of free tacos. In fact, Taco Bell hopes you do. The point of the subscription program is that is a loss leader.

A loss leader, as Investopedia defines it, is to sell a product so cheap that you lose money on each transaction with the bet that those you've lured with the deal will spend money on other things. So, if you're subscribed, you might visit Taco Bell more often than you normally would to get the most value from your subscription. And you can't just have one taco, you must have nachos and so on. By the end of the month, you will have spent more money on Taco Bell than you would normally. At least, that's the strategy.

In fact, Taco Bell is not the first to implement the plan. Last year, Panera Bread piloted an unlimited tea and coffee subscription. Restaurant Dive writes that the company saw a 70% increase in people buying food with their coffee. The perceived deal encouraged them to spend more.

Of course, you could always show up for your free taco and leave. But, then again, if you like Taco Bell so much as to purchase a subscription, you are unlikely to want to game the deal too much.