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Around the World in 80 McDonalds

Around the World in 80 McDonalds – wow, what a marvelous topic for a blog.

Surprisingly, if Google is to be believed then nobody’s actually thought of this.

Around the World in 80 jobs, bindun.

Around the World on a Toilet – surprisingly also bindun.

So here’s Around the World in 80 McDonalds…

China

McDonalds are everywhere in China. In Foshan there were 3 outlets that I counted. In Guangzhou I reckoned you were never more than 600 yards from a McDonalds.

As to the food itself, it’s pretty variable. Some restaurants are good, others the fries are too salty and the coke flat. Best McDonalds in China I tried was the one in Xinshi Xu, Guangzhou. The worst by a long mile was in Shenzhen’s Futian district. Oddly some McDonalds in China are much more expensive than others.

Quarterpounder with Cheese. Note the sachet of ketchup. Very occasionally you'll get two sachets. As in the rest of Asia, you nearly always get a receipt with your meal.

Quarter pounder with cheese meal in China. Note the sachet of ketchup. Very occasionally you’ll get two sachets. As in the rest of Asia, you nearly always get a receipt with your meal.

Hong Kong

Every mainland Chinese person I talked to told me that Hong Kong was, is and always will belong to China. As a Brit I feel a little humiliated by this. Still, it’s a wonderful test to see if you’re talking to a Chinese person who is from the mainland or from one of the many overseas Chinese communities.

Politics aside, I must admit that the McDonalds meals in Hong Kong are amongst the best in the world. There’s just something good about the cooking oil there.

Thailand

Thailand McDonalds are quite good. The meals are good value, and often you’ll get a large fries for the same price as a regular fries.

A typical meal from a McDonalds franchise in Thailand

A typical meal from a McDonalds franchise in Thailand

Thailand is the first place I’ve been to where there aren’t any sachets of tomato sauce. Instead you’re given a couple of plastic dishes and you can fill them with ketchup from a central ketchup pump.

A bonus is that there are two types of ketchup (regular and American), plus chilli sauce.

Thailand also wins bonus points for the Ronald McDonald character adopting the famous Wai pose that’s so iconic about this popular tourist destination:

 

Ronald McDonald in Thailand - a fabulous nod to the local customs

Ronald McDonald in Thailand – a fabulous nod to the local customs

The USA

I went to a McDonalds on 8th Avenue, New York. Yeah, pretty, pretty good, and the home nation of McDonalds did not disappoint. Crispy fries, a whacking great twin burger combo, plus that ever popular Monopoly game…

Just the thing after getting soaked in one of the rainstorms that was the aftermath of 2005's Hurricane Katrina...

Just the thing after getting soaked in one of the rainstorms that was the aftermath of 2005’s Hurricane Katrina…

Japan

Japanese McDonalds have wonderful customer service. That I remember.

I also remember once having a double quarter pounder meal. Seriously, that was a lot of meat. It came in a brown paper bag:

Ignoring the "no outside food" rule in my salaryman hotel, I brought this gal back with me...

Ignoring the “no outside food” rule in my salaryman hotel, I brought this gal back with me…

Japan was also the place where I once had a Fillet-o-Fish instead of the usual beef patty. Yeah, why would I do that? Jetlag’s a terrible thing, especially 8-hours-time-difference of it!

A typical McDonalds restaurant in Japan...

A typical McDonalds restaurant in Japan

Malaysia

Wow – McDonalds in Malaysia was a bit of a catastrophe. For only the second time in my life, I got the wrong food put on my black plastic tray. I ordered a double cheeseburger meal, but I got some kind of chicken burger instead.

The next time I went in I dispensed with the usual quarter pounder or double cheeseburger meal and went with a Big N’ Tasty burger:

McDonalds in Malaysia - a Big N' Tasty burger meal

McDonalds in Malaysia – a Big N’ Tasty burger meal

Yeah, there’s a reason we humans are creatures of habit. I didn’t feel good after eating this curious burger.

Other than that, well like in Thailand, you get little plastic dishes to put your ketchup on. There the similarities end because in Malaysia you get a plastic lid with your cup.

Enough Already!

And that’s about it.

Wait you ask – where are the other 74* countries?

Well the point is, McDonalds is pretty much the same in every country in the world. So Around The World in 80 McDonalds just seems a totally pointless exercise.

However, I may be wrong on this. So if you’ve noticed anything interesting about McDonalds in a particular country, then leave your observations below. Post something really outstanding and I might have to check out that particular country.

*75 if you’re from the People’s Republic of China.

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