One of America's most influential — and sometimes controversial — exports is fast food. From the earliest chains, like White Castle, to healthy newfangled concepts like Freshii, there’s a seemingly infinite number of options for a quick, inexpensive lunch or dinner from a chain restaurant. But once you look outside of our borders, you’ll soon realize that there’s a whole world of fast food out there, and some international fast food and fast-casual chains are so good that we wish they’d come over to the U.S.
Just like the U.S. is saturated with major chains like McDonald’s, Burger King, and KFC (all of which have established presences outside of the country as well), many countries are home to fast food chains that have become household names in their native land but are completely unknown stateside. While some of these chains, like the U.K.’s Pret a Manger, the Philippines’ Jollibee, Canada’s Tim Hortons, and South Africa’s Nando’s have managed to make inroads in the United States, some of the world’s most beloved (and legitimately delicious) fast food chains have no current plans to expand into the crowded and competitive American market.
It’s generally considered a faux pas to eat at a fast food restaurant when traveling abroad, but there’s a big difference between stopping at, say, a McDonald’s versus at a famed fish and chips chain while in England. It’s a shame that these restaurants haven’t yet opened any locations in America, but until they do, they’re definitely worth seeking out the next time you’re overseas.