Ronald McDonald is typically welcoming to children. McDonald’s knows the value of brand loyalty, and aggressively markets to kids. If you are old enough to chew your food, the amiable clown has a Happy Meal for you. Unless, that is, you roll up at the drive-thru window in anything other than a standard motor vehicle.
Consider this cautionary tale. “A father in England let his adorable 2-year-old drive his toy Range Rover through a McDonald’s drive-thru to order lunch,” Fox writes, “and the hamburger giant doesn’t want it to happen again.”
Hamburger giant isn’t really an apt description. Ronald McDonald is tall, but he’s no giant. Still, Paul Turner had the misfortune of invoking the clown’s ire. He was in Doncaster, England, with his two-year-old son, Austin. When the pair noticed that the drive-thru was empty, Turner let his son drive up in his toy Range Rover to order a cheeseburger.
“I want a cheeseburger,” Austin told the attendant. He even handed over an appropriate amount of money.
“The staff thought it was hilarious and some others came over to see what was going on,” Turner told reporters.
While the workers at the restaurant may have enjoyed to break from the norm, the folks at corporate weren’t as pleased. They’re the ones who have to ensure compliance and deal with insurance companies.
A spokeswoman told The Sun: “Our drive-thru lanes are specifically designed for roadworthy motor vehicles, and only people in such vehicles will be served. Anyone attempting to use a different mode of transport will be asked to make their order inside.”
“In this instance by serving the child and his parent, our restaurant team did not follow this procedure – and those involved have been reminded of the policy.”
Reminded. That’s better than reprimanded. Being reminded of policy seems reasonable.
Still, you may wonder why cute kids are not allowed to drive themselves through the drive thru. The answer is obvious.
Still. It is up to staff to say no.