Subway’s $5 footlong sandwich may be gone for good.
Starting this month, Subway franchises can decide whether to keep the discounted sub on their menu, Subway CEO Trevor Haynes told USA Today.
The $5 sub was a huge hit when it debuted in the early 2000s, Money reports, but it lost popularity after a $1 price increase in 2016, spurred by franchise complaints that the price was too low to make a profit. After customer complaints, however, the $5 deal returned last winter.
Now, the availability of the deal depends on where you live. Some shops may keep the $5 promotion for certain sandwiches or on certain days, but others could offer other specials entirely. For example, customers in San Francisco can get a $3.99 6-inch sub, while other California shops are testing new menu items, like paninis.
Subway gave franchises the freedom to choose whether to offer the $5 deal because its wants to help the shops find a “regional value message,” said Haynes. “If you look at California, there’s a very different cost of business than in Arkansas.”
While the $5 sub is optional, other changes are less flexible. Haynes told USA Today that overhaul to Subway’s image will begin next year that requires franchise owners to update the decor. For a 1,200-square-foot store, it’ll cost around $40,000, USA Today reports.
New menu items and a new look may be what Subway needs: Earlier this year, the company announced the closure of 500 stores. But with tens of thousands of shops worldwide, USA Today says Subway raked in $16.8 billion in sales last year.