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4/30/08 | Subway $5 Sandwich



[ Currently Eating: Wheat Toast ]

Subway Sandwich - Cheap Eats

This post could probably be summed up in just one paragraph of extremely short sentences:

Subway. Foot-Long Sandwich. $5. No Coupon required. Limited Time.

Done.

Ok, well I did do a little more work than that. I actually bought the sandwich and I took some pictures. I have been wanting to make a few posts about Subway on Cheap Eats for awhile now, and not because I think Jared is the coolest thing since sliced baguettes. (Actually, am I the only one who thinks he used up his 15 minutes many, many moons ago? Seriously, he seems like a nice guy but I was getting tired of his story.)

No, the real reason I haven’t made a post on Subway sandwiches yet is because every single time I order them I’m so hungry that I can’t be bothered with taking photos. For me, Subway is the fast food solution for days where I absolutely need to eat something immediately but don’t want to eat a hamburger, chicken or taco. We often do a pickup on weekends when I’m doing home repairs along with my dad – we could just make a sandwich but picking one up saves time. It’s fast, cheap, healthier than hamburgers and (usually) fresh.

What with the Recessedepression™ looming, fast food companies are pulling out the stops. This is great for Cheap Eaters. The 5 Dollar Footlong Deal sure got me in the door. What I like about it is you don’t have to buy a drink. For as we all know, fast food companies clean up on the margins for soft drink sales. The deal is also good for ANY footlong, which means you don’t have to worry if it’ll apply to your favorite sandwich. It also provides opportunity for some sort of variety.

Subway Sandwich - Cheap Eats

I actually liked Subway even before their 5 dollar deal because you have control over what goes in your sandwich and they make it their right in front of you. A few tips:

1. Don’t go at mealtime rush hour. Employees don’t have the time to pay attention to your special requests when there’s a line going out the door. Also, I just hate waiting.

2. Find a Subway that’s “good”. Since Subway is so popular there might be more than one near you – I’ve found that sandwich-making is an art that some people just cannot master. Also, some locations have fixin’s that are just more consistent than others.

3. Watch what the employee is doing. They’re human so I don’t blame ‘em… they’re usually thinking about what they’re going to wear to the party Saturday night. For the love of God, don’t look away when they’re making your sandwich. I can’t remember how many times when I tell them “mayo, but no mustard” they just put both of them on.

4. Repeat yourself when giving your order. I used to just blurt out the order at the beginning like: “Footlong BMT on wheat no mustard no onions w/ mayo lettuce tomato bellpepper cucumbers olives pickles vinegar oil salt pepper no meal just the sandwich” and expect them to remember it. Inevitably (and this is true at nearly every fast food place), they won’t. You’ll have to repeat it at every step down the assembly, which is fine with me as long as they make it correctly.

5. Get a footlong sandwich even if you can only eat half. I like to save the 1/2 for later in the day, since my metabolism is like gangbusters and I get hungry within a few hours. Or, if you have a small appetite, split one with a friend.

6. Don’t be mean. I’m sure standing on your feet 8 hours a day making sandwiches gets a little tiring. Having a customer yell at you for not putting enough olives in your BMT is not a nice thing. Be patient. I know it’s their job, but if you’re nice then they’ll tend to be nice to you. (Of course, there’s always exceptions – I avoid those employees and Subways like the plague)

Subway Sandwich - Cheap Eats

OK, so the truth is that you could easily make a comparable or better sandwich at home with better ingredients. The thing is, with the prices of fresh veggies and produce in general going up in price, having all of them on hand at home might actually turn out to be pretty expensive.

If you know ahead of time you’re planning to eat sandwiches, and you know you have to make them for other people, then it makes sense. For me, it’s often a spur of the moment thing so I just don’t have the time to go out and buy all the veggies. It’s cheaper for me to get a foot long sandwich. And at $5 each for any of them, with no coupon needed, this is a pretty good deal. I’ve no idea how long the deal will last, but for now they’ve got me as a regular customer.

Edit: It appears that this deal is not nationwide in some places, or may have diffrent rules for purchase (i.e. only valid on certain sandwiches). So make sure to check before you head to Subway.

Price: $5 for any footlong sandwich
Found At: Subway
Cheap Eats Score: 8/10

32 Responses to “Subway $5 Sandwich”

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  1. cybele Says:

    I think I had Subway once about 11 years ago. I found their menus confusing and very expensive if I didn’t want a huge sandwich.

    However, it looks like they’ve changed a bit since then … that sandwich & bread looks good!

  2. Marvo Says:

    We here on this rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean have to pay $5.99 to enjoy a footlong Subway sandwich during this promotion. Bollocks, I say! Still, I’ve probably bought a whole lot more Subway sandwiches in the past few weeks than I have in the previous few years.

  3. wetsocks Says:

    My issue with Subway is that they skimp on the toppings. I have actually seen them put on 8 black olives and then take 3 off. I got all excited over my olives and then they were taken away from me. I know they have to cut costs and they do that by limiting the amount of veggies they give you, but it really ruins the sandwich. Especially when I ordered a veggie!

  4. Cheap Eats Editor Says:

    cybele – yes, for awhile I thought it was expensive. If it wasn’t for the $5 deal I wouldn’t be buying it so frequently.

    marvo – interesting, I didn’t know they had a different pricing for the islands. I know nearly everything else does, but I thought Subway would do it nationwide.

    wetsocks – Agreed… like I said, some of them are more generous than others. Also, I don’t know if the workers will be pleased, but I think you have the right to say “put more on”, as long as it’s the free toppings. I’ve seen a number of people in front of me do that without any adverse affects. But I’ve never done it…

  5. EC Says:

    I keep forgetting about Subway, and there’s one really close by. That would last me for both lunch and dinner!

    Here in the Philly area, Wawa stores are also running a dinner meal deal between 4 and 9 p.m., I can’t remember all the particulars. There’s a choice of items that are $3.99 each, or $9.99 for any combo of 3–and one of the choices is 3 10-inch Classic hoagies (subs) for $9.99. They also let you customize your order, but you use a touch-screen rather than talking to the employees.

    A good deal, but I get tired of Wawa after awhile, and Subway would be a nice change. I don’t think Wawa has the same selection of veggies, either.

  6. EC Says:

    I’m really sorry–the Wawa deal is til 8 p.m. I hit submit before I caught the error!

  7. Julie Says:

    no post about free cone day (yesterday) at ben and jerry’s or 31 cent scoop day at baskin robins (today/tonight)?
    …i think im beginning to loose faith.

  8. Cheap Eats Editor Says:

    EC – er, what is a Wawa?

    Julie – Sorry! I knew about this, but by the time I thought about posting the 31 cent scoop day I thought it was too late because I’d already done the Subway post. I need to start writing these things down because I forget. Actually, I didn’t know about Ben and Jerry’s…

  9. skibs Says:

    Subway just isn’t what it used to be, but yum…italian herb and cheese bread…great choice!

  10. Jeff Says:

    I love Subway, but those tips are rules to live by. I’ve had sandwiches that are a mess and others that were works of art. Gotta be choosy when you’re paying for it. Over here in NorCal, the $5 deal only applies to a few types of sandwiches. Meatball, Ham, Turkey, and a few others. The rest are normal price, which sucks cause my usual order is a toasted Melt.

  11. Nicole Says:

    I actually used to work for Subway a couple years back… I think I am the best sandwichmaker Subway has ever seen- of course I took pride in what I did too. I had the philosophy that every sandwich I made should be made exactly how I would make it if I had to eat it- and I never had a single complaint. About the skimpy veggies- Subway actually has crazy rules about how many of each to put on the sandwich and they pound this in your head when they train you. For example, no more than 3 olives!! 3 olives on a 6 inch sub is ridiculous and I refused to go by this rule! If you want more veggies just ask- no problem and no charge. Since I have stopped working for Subway it is almost impossible to resist the urge to jump behind the counter and make my own sub when I go… I feel like I could do it better. Overall though I love Subway to this day and will eat there until I no longer can.

  12. bj Says:

    EC, it isn’t nice to taunt those specials for the sad people outside of your area that don’t get to go to wawa.

  13. kftgr Says:

    What gets me up-in-arms about the $5.99 price in Hawaii is the way it is displayed on the commercials. It’s in sizable text, not fine print, which is good; but the line is “only $5.99 in Hawaii!” It’s like being told with a smile and a cheery voice that since you’re so special, you get specially screwed…all that with the “five dollar footloooong” jingle repeating in the back.

  14. bingsy Says:

    I just hate the commercials sooooooooooo much It sounds suggestive, and the suggestion of a Subway sandwich is the opposite of sexy. It’s what you eat when you know for sure you will NOT have sex.

    cybele – the menu was confusing even to the employees. I once ordered an Albuquerque or some such thing. The employee informed me that they didn’t have the special bread or sauce or any of the other special ingredients that were supposed to be reminiscent of the southwest, so essentially I got a turkey sandwich. I assumed he/she would charge me a turkey price, but when I looked at my receipt he/she had charged me for the specialty sandwich. I still to this day think the specialties were supposed to be just suggestions of sandwiches that could technically exist. They are good ideas for sandwiches. Subway didn’t actually have the components to make the sandwich, but nudge nudge weren’t they good ideas for a sandwich.

    Thundercloud Subs in Texas sells a 9 inch bologna sub for just $2.99.

  15. mrpeepants Says:

    hey found your site some months ago. wish i found it earlier! i was a college student for the past 2 years and my budget was tight & bleeding at times. even with a little more of a budget, i still love good cheap food.

    anyways on topic. i’m in cali, so i have this deal. I think its great. $5 is a great price. Usually where I go, my sandwhich is packed, but I always get all veggies with whatever I choose. I’m gonna be real bummed when the $5 goes. Don’t think I’ll go there nearly as much. One bad thing though is that sometimes the sandwiches sit in my tummy with a funny feeling after devouring them. Not a horrible feeling but not exactly good either.

  16. Cheap Eats Editor Says:

    skibs – I have to agree, the choice of bread is nice.

    jeff – that’s so strange how it’s different up there, I don’t see why they wouldn’t have the same deal.

    nicole – yeah, I think 3 olives per sandwich is ridiculous – I think they should consider the cost of making the customer happy versus saving a micro-penny on a 5th of an olive… now, if I could just get Subway to fire all their marketeers (and Jared) and hire me instead, I’d turn that ship around, hehehe. Not.

    bj – again, what is this WAWA!?

    kftgr – I have to agree about things in Hawaii being more expensive – i know fuel prices to ship stuff over there are high, but I wouldve thought they’d suck it up.

    bingsy – if you think that commercial is bad – have you seen the new Wienerschnitzel one? I was even going to make a post about it – I think they crossed a line somewhere there. It’s funny. But deep in the caverns of the Wienerschnitzel marketeer dept, someone is going to be very, very fired.

    mrpeepants – I’ve had that feeling on about two occasions. But I think it just me overeating the whole footlong sandwich, and not from anything bad in it.

  17. Jeff Says:

    I think it’s just that particular store that limits which subs are $5. The one closer to my house has a sign that says every sub is included in the deal. I don’t eat at that one since I only eat Subway when I’m on lunch break.

    FYI, Quiznos is hoping on board and offering $5 deals on a few of their sandwiches, too. I’m not a big fan of quiznos since they’re so overpriced and the sandwiches aren’t the best, but I might give them another try while this deal is going on.

  18. Cheap Eats Editor Says:

    i saw the quiznos commercials too – bandwagoners! I personally really, really dislike quiznos, in fact they were going to be a post for the Hall Of Shame but i never got around to it. But, i haven’t tried it in about 10 years – so thinking of maybe giving them one last try.

  19. Jason Says:

    CEE: Wawa is a convenience store chain in the northeast. They quickly took over for 7-11 up here due to cleaner stores, awesome coffee and even better sandwiches. I can’t think of a better place at 3am to get a hoagie and coffee.

  20. yummyummm Says:

    You should check out the Walmart Footlongs they offer in their deli cases… not bad and usually MUCH less than $5

  21. heather Says:

    I don’t like Quiznos either, and even if they are being copycats, it’s a good thing if restaurants follow suit and lower their prices. Their prices are ridiculous for the quality you get. The Subway’s in the malls around here don’t participate in the $5 deal. That sucks!

  22. Mrs.QSPN Says:

    My husband and I have been killing these $5 subs…sometimes we share one but if we are super hungry and its a late lunch he will eat a whole one and some of mine! I mean really…lunch for two people for 5.50 (tax is stupid high in Nashville)…cant beat it.

  23. Randy Says:

    When does this deal end?

  24. Chico Says:

    Hmm, a couple of points. The promotion has dwindled to “everyday value menu” status at most Subways (mid-June). In general this means that eight subs are $5 (Cold Cut Combo, Tuna, Veggie, Meatball, Spicy Italian, Grilled Chicken, ham, turkey) and whatever sub you *actually want* is back in the $7 range.

    However, the Subway nearest my house still has the “any regular footlong for $5″ going (a low traffic location). So perhaps you will find a similar Subway near you. I think $5 is a reasonable price and go there a lot, but I almost never got a sub when they were $6.50+.

    I grew up in southern Pennsylvania and northern Maryland — Wawa stores were common. They are convenience stores that don’t sell gasoline (at least they didn’t back then). Chicagolanders, “White Hen” is a near analogue. I’m sure every region of the USA has some sort of gas-station-without-gas (aka “overpriced chips and milk store”).

  25. Irene Says:

    haha, did you see the comercial? it says something about the $5 foot longs are here to stay, and underneath the pictures of sandwiches they’re showing, there’s $5.99 in hawaii, like under all the pictures. it’s kinda funny. at least you can’t blame them for false advertising or tricking you by saying “prices and participation may vary.”

  26. Angela Davis Says:

    My comment I walked in to order a footlong I looked at the area where the food is prepared If its not clean I won’t order.Some of the employees aprons are dirty. I always say just a little mustard little oil and vingar and everytime they have put too much or soak the bottom half of the bread.Appereance is important preaparing food for the public also mangement need to train employee on product waste.

  27. Mindy Says:

    I have fallen in love with Subway’s Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki footlong. My husband and I got it like 3 times on our last vacation. It’s on their list of healthier options, so you at least feel mentally better after eating it than you would if you ate a burger or french fries. YUM! Just tried their newest sandwich, a pulled chicken BBQ…just not the same as my first love.

  28. 808state Says:

    I know that I’m months behind but I didn’t see any comments on this. I live in Hawaii and I’m not sure if the commercials are the same but there’s one section where a hula(I’m sure you know what this is right?) girl is doing that ridiculous 5 dollar dance. Anyone else find that a little ironic? Sure, sure, I guess they could say “but it is 5 dollars…” If you ignore that extra 99 cents. Just throwing that out there.

  29. Joshua Says:

    I work at subway and i think were the only store that puts tons of vegies on. When people say a ton of olives then, we put like 50 on.
    the thing i hate about subway is people coming in to lose weight and getting a 12″ BMT or 12″ Tuna. come on the BMT is 900 calories with no sauce and the tuna is like 1200 calories and over 100g of fat. that is like 3 big macs at mcdonalds, wow and people honestly think its heathy.even a footlong turkey with a little mayo and cheese is 900 calories and then you get chips and soda. stick with the 6″ and apple slices thats a better meal and it still fills you up.

    PS: I wish subway stores would get better interiors, they all look like there from the 70′s still.

  30. Uncahal Says:

    I tried a Subway tuna on wheat in Seattle back in ’95. Gross. Tasteless.Dry. Could hardly tell it was tuna. I do not understand how they can have 30 thousand of these things. One visit was all I needed to avoid them.

  31. Slacs Says:

    Here is some subway protocal.
    Firstly, when you say mayo, no mustard, be aware you are definitely asking for mustard. You see a subway artist ASKS you what you WANT, not what you DON’T want. They’re not just going to randomly put veggies and sauces on there.
    Secondly, step 1) type of bread 2) size of bread 3) what kind of sandwich 3) what kind of cheese? 4) would you like that toasted? THEN you get your vegetables.
    Thirdly, its just a mystery that people have the gall to complain about toppings. People if 6 olives is not enough, ask for more. They come with the sandwich, they’re free so to speak. Employees MUST use the formula unless asked by the customer for more, they don’t need an attitude about it. You act like uttering the words, I’d like some more please, will cause cancer of the mouth or something, sheesh.

  32. tom mquiggin Says:

    so i go in to two different stores.ask for pastriami and sorry .
    so why does add say any sandwich.false add dissapointed




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