McDonald's in Europe? Godsend or Blight?

Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 11:54 AM
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McDonald's in Europe? Godsend or Blight?

European McDonalds to me are a Godsend, but many folks i talk to say they would never be caught dead in one. What's your take?
To me they're a Godsend because of:
...their WCs in cities where public toilets are rare. Rather than having to buy an expensive drink in a cafe just to use their WC at most McDonalds you use them without hassle.
...for a cheap caffeine fix or a place to rest weary bones for a few minutes, again without spending a fortune.
...for quick snacks that don't surprise you and there is little language barrier ordering. (I would find that someone who went to Europe and ate only fast-food fare is shortchanging themselves but at time i just want to dispense with waiters, foreing menus and the long time many restaurants involve.) McSalats are a quick low-cal fix.
...neat outdoor tables often in the town's central square. McDonalds often has the same fancy wicker chairs out front the belly up to expensive cafes next door - i often just want to people watch and McTables fill the bill cheaply. Instead of coffee i often order a McBeer or McWine.
...Internet access - more and more offer free internet access and e-mails!
So like i said i feel it's sad to head for the Golden Arches for main meals, but thank God they're there for basic tourist needs! I'm sure others feel like Marc Bove, the French farmer who bulldozed his local McDonald's down to protest their presence.
WHAT DO YOU THINK? GODSEND OR BULLDOZE?
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 11:58 AM
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Marc Bove didn't have any money invested in McDonald's stock obviously.

Ask the investors if THEY think these establishments are a blight?

Ask the people who enjoy them if they are a blight and they'll say "no."

Ask the people who hate them and they'll say "yes."

What difference does it make?
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:03 PM
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I see the good points and the bad. but I think they make an adventure into McEurope.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:09 PM
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From what I have seen, European kids like McD's as much as American kids do.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:10 PM
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I like McStarbucks
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:14 PM
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PalQ, what is with all these questions you're asking that have no answer? You're getting into troll territory!
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:32 PM
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Like someone said about my previous post- very slow day at work! I should stick to asking how the Boeuf Marigny is at the Hotel Stupendo? Come to think many questions on that theme are the same as the one i raised-no hard fast answer. S L O D A Y A T W O R K!
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:37 PM
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"PalQ, what is with all these questions you're asking that have no answer?"

Actually, they do have an answer, not just the same answer or a "right" answer.

Obviously millions of the world's population likes McDonalds. Personally, I would not go into a McDonalds in the U.S., so why would I go to one in Europe (I did go into one for its restroom in Paris, and it was the filthiest restroom I have ever seen).

Are they a blight? To me, they're a blight in our own country, but to each his own. I love Starbucks, while other people hate them.

Perhaps Europeans can Supersize themselves like Americans have done, and we can share America's obesity problems with other countries.


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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:45 PM
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The McD hater is JOSE Bove, not Marc.

And considering that the McD provides fast and inexpensive food, uses local suppliers to every possible extent it can (and increases its own costs that way) and has enormous buying power (read: engine of commerce), it seems to work hard to NOT be a bad Euro-corporate citizen.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 12:49 PM
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BLIGHT!
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:11 PM
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McDonald's are not aimed at American tourists, as far as I can tell. They are the same in Europe as in the U.S., fast food for folks who like it. When I've bothered to notice, the McD's are filled with European locals.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:21 PM
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We liked the McD's we found as they were the only places with 'maxi' drinks that included ICE!! They were a GodSend to us during the summer of '03 when temps were in the 90's+ in Paris and surrounding area. Loved the chocolate croque monsieur, tomato/cheese, etc.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:24 PM
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The quality of the food is better at the euro McDs...not as much sugar and fat as far as I can tell. In fact, the hot chocolate and ice cream sundaes are in a different league compared to what we get here in the states.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:27 PM
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And MacDonalds, as many Europeans inevitably pronounce it, are more environmentally friendly there it seems; in Switzerland i often get Sundaes in cups that you can eat - the best earth-friendly container possible!
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:31 PM
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Blight here, blight there.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:40 PM
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I don't mind some of the chain restaurants when I'm touring in a city. Like mentioned earlier, it's nice to know you can run in and use the restrooms ( US term, I know - but McDonalds is a US chain so I think I can get away with it in this instance ) and buy something to drink. I don't normally eat at McDonald's when vacationing in Europe and I would hate to see them springing up every other block. But they do serve a purpose.


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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 01:47 PM
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__________________________

I just like their muffins.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 02:41 PM
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They're great if you have kids and need to have a quick dinner out (when it's late mine can't handle a regular restaurant).
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 03:04 PM
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typically, they are no more of a blight than any other bad restaurants. with the strict zoning laws in most places, they tend to blend in well with the surrounding shops and are usually in the town/city centres rather than sprawling all over the countryside.

i never eat in them (wouldn't rule it out if i ever needed a fast, no hassle meal). i assume that your post also refers to pizza hut, KFC, and burger king, all which have a substantial presence in europe.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2004, 03:23 PM
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Well since you invited people to vent their prejudices:

Blight.

Because they have nothing to do with "there" -- the place I spent a fortune to see -- and everything to do with "here" -- the place I paid to get out of.
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