mcdonalds extra value meal
MichaelJay /

McDonald’s ‘Extra Value Meals’ Might Not Actually Be Saving You Money

A federal judge ruled against a Chicagoan who complained about the marketing strategy
mcdonalds extra value meal
MichaelJay /

It's fair to expect that any product labeled “value” will come at a bargain price. But a woman in Chicago just found out the hard way that that’s not always the case. According to The Associated Press, Kelly Killeen filed a class-action lawsuit in February 2017 alleging that McDonald’s was deceiving customers with “Extra Value Meals” that turned out to be more expensive than buying the same items à la carte. On April 6, U.S. District Court Judge Elaine Bucklo rejected the case, claiming that the chain’s advertisements aren’t deceptive at all.

It all started after Killeen ordered a sausage breakfast burrito Extra Value Meal for $5.08 at a McDonald’s in the Windy City. After doing some calculations of her own, she found that she could’ve saved 11 cents if she had ordered the items individually. Two sausage burritos, hash browns, and a medium coffee sans “deal” reportedly cost only $4.97.

According to the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, Bucklo dismissed the case 14 months after it was filed because, regardless of how the meals are marketed, prices are listed clear as day on store menus.

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“Indeed, anyone familiar with fast-food restaurants such as McDonald’s surely knows that prices are typically displayed on menus located near the registers,” the federal judge wrote in the April 6 decision. “Understandably, plaintiff may not have wished to take the time to compare prices, but there is no question that doing so would have dispelled the deception on which her claims are based.”

The Daily Meal has reached out to McDonald's for comment.

If you’re pinching pennies, you may want to read the fine print next time you scoot through the drive-thru. Let’s face it, we all try to save a buck or two when we can, so we’ll let you in on a little secret (or 24). Here are two dozen tips and tricks for saving money at the supermarket.