Since its inception more than 70 years ago, McDonald’s honed its focus on customer experience and quality fast food. As a result, they have grown into one of the largest retail chains worldwide.
The company also contributes its success to its shrewd business model. Rather than scraping revenue from its low profit margins, which is normal in the food industry, they established a franchised-based model instead. By owning the land and charging a recurring fee for franchisees, they can quickly amass wealth and quickly expand its market reach.
As a result, each store is independent and sets its own lunch and breakfast service times. So what time exactly does McDonald’s serve lunch, and until when?
What Time Does McDonald’s Serve Lunch?
Most McDonald’s start serving their lunch menu at 10:30 am on Mondays to Fridays and at 11 am on weekends. McDonald’s also has separate hours for lunch deals, which will be specified on the promotional materials. Furthermore, every franchise owner decides their own lunch hours, so some stores may begin serving lunch sooner than others.
To verify a specific McDonald’s store’s hours, head over to the store locator page on their website or on the mobile app.
Why does McDonald’s Serve Lunch Later on Weekends?
McDonald’s serves their lunch meals later on weekends because of the higher demand for their breakfast menu compared to other days of the week. Again, the lunch hours are ultimately decided by the franchisee owners.
What Time Does McDonald’s Stop Serving Lunch
McDonald’s serve lunch all day long until it closes, and each store’s closing time varies. For 24-hour locations, lunch hours end at 5 am — when they begin serving breakfast.
You should also note that drive-thru hours may differ from the restaurant’s operating hours. Some close later, while others are open 24-hours. To be sure, check the specific location’s operating hours at the restaurant locator before ordering your late-night snack.
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Do 24-hour McDonald’s Serve Lunch All Day?
No, all 24-hour McDonald’s stop serving lunch at 5.00 am or whenever they prepare to serve the breakfast menu. The time may vary slightly as per the franchise owner, but most McDonald’s only serve lunch until 5 am.
What Is the Difference between McDonald’s Breakfast and Lunch Menu?
McDonald’s breakfast menu comprises the cult-favorite McMuffins, Big Breakfast, and hotcakes. The fast-food giant used to sell the breakfast menu all day but stopped in 2020, much to many customers’ displeasure. Now, you can only catch a McMuffin in stores before 10.30 am or 11 am, depending on the branch you dine in.
After 11 am, you’ll be served the lunch menu. McDonald’s lunch menu is more familiar — cheeseburgers, nuggets, Happy Meals, and so on. Unlike the morning meal counterparts, lunch is served until the store closes, or until 5 am if it’s a 24-hour location.
Why Do Breakfast Service Times Vary From Restaurant to Restaurant?
McDonald’s breakfast service times and operating hours vary from restaurant to restaurant because of its franchise-based business model. McDonald’s doesn’t actually own the McDonald’s store that you see — they own the land and lease the selling rights to franchisees.
Every single franchisee has autonomy over their operation hours, provided they follow McDonald’s strict franchising requirements. However, operating hours and breakfast service times are not included in those requirements, meaning that the franchisee can serve lunch anytime they want.
This is why different McDonald’s outlets have different operating hours and breakfast service times. But they generally serve around the same time across the board, to keep in line with branding and obvious economic reasons.
What About McDonald’s Breakfast and Lunch Deals?
The Golden Arches provides a wide variety of deals, ranging from the Christmas Mariah Carey Meals to the $6 Mix and Match. These deals also have their set times, but they do not follow McDonald’s set service and operating hours. Instead, McDonald’s determines each deal’s service times which you can view on their app.
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McDonald’s separates its breakfast and lunch service times to improve its operational effectiveness and profitability. Most locations start serving lunch at 11 am and stop when the store closes, or until 5 am if they’re a 24-hour location.
Moreover, each franchisee has autonomy over their operating hours and menu times, resulting in slightly different times for each branch. To be sure, customers can use the store locator on the official website or app to determine each outlet’s operating times.