How Different is McDonald’s in Thailand vs Philippines

How Different is McDonald’s in Thailand vs Philippines

Curious as to how different McDonald's in Thailand vs Philippines? Well, in this blog post, I’ll uncover some of these differences for our amusement, and of course for reference to those who will be traveling to Thailand. It may be important to note that information contained here are a combination of personal observation when I visited Thailand, along with some Googling here and there.

At initial glance, McDonald’s Thailand may seem not at all difference with what we have here in the Philippines. However, once you start diving deeper into its menu, you’d discover subtle and not-so-subtle differences that are very much interesting. Let's start off with their snacks, deserts and beverages.

Using Rabbit in paying for McDonald's in ThailandMcDonald's Thailand Self-Order Kiosk
Credit Cards and their transportation system loadable card, Rabbit, is accepted as mode of payment in McDonald's Thailand

Richer options in snacks, desserts and beverages in Thailand
McDonald’s Thailand has a wider range of selection when it comes to beverages and desserts, and I think that is the bigger area as to where we can find difference. Uniquely, they have corn, taro coconut and pineapple pies, along with McPatongko (something very unique) which is a pastry-based snack that is dipped in condensed milk. Compared this to ours, wherein we just have apple pie, Thailand's selection is relatively abundant.

Unique desserts and snacks in McDonald's Thailand
Above are all the desserts/snacks that are available in McDonald's Thailand but not available in the Philippines

Corn Pie of McDonald's ThailandCorn Pie of McDonald's Thailand
Special thanks to Emil for sending me additional pics from our McDonald's trip. According to him, the corn pie was interestingly reminiscent of our own dessert, maja blanca. 

Chicken Kra Pao Meal of McDonald's with Chicken Nuggets

Subtle differences in the main dish offering
For the main dishes, they have a few of very Thai-specific menu. The only difference I was able to note is that McDonald's Thailand seem to have more options on pork burgers, chicken bites variations including the chicken kra pao. Hence, in a first look, everything may look almost the same with what we have. However, you just need to do some digging throughout the menu to discover the special offerings they have there.

Chicken Kra Pao Meal in McDonald's Thailand

Given that I wanted to try something that is found only in McDonald's Thailand, I ordered the Chicken Kra Pao meal (149 THB) which was a promotional meal that time that came with 6 pcs nuggets (along with an interesting plum sauce) and a drink of your choice. Of course, I went with a milk tea. That's something that we don't have, even if lots of us Filipinos are very much into the drink. 

Plum sauce of McDonald's Thailand Chicken Nuggets

Another subtle difference was with the chicken nugget sauce. They did not have the usual barbecue sauce that we are familiar with. Instead, they have Plum Sauce, which was something I very much loved! 

In terms of price, which is more expensive: Thailand or Philippines?
It is generally cheaper in McDonald Philippines than in Thailand’s. This is coming from the observation that ala carte dishes in Thailand seem to be more expensive than PH counterpart. However, to better illustrate, let’s use the Big Mac (ala carte) as a reference along with menu prices as of April 2023. 

Comparing prices of McDonald's Thailand vs Philippines (2023 Edition)

In Thailand, one solo Big Mac costs 145 THB which is roughly P233, while in Philippines the same burger costs only P175 (approximately 109 THB). Clearly, we see some material difference. Now, what if we speak about meal. Let’s say Big Mac Large Meal that comes with large fries and large drinks. Let’s match it up! In Thailand, this costs 235 THB (approximately P378), while in Philippines the same thing costs P284 only. 

Using inference from the above, it’s safe to say that generally, McDonald’s in the Philippines costs about 25% less than counterpart in Thailand.

With all the differences, is McDonald's Thailand worth a visit?

Without doubt, you should! For me, checking out the fast food in a different country still counts as a cultural immersion activity. It allows you to further absorb about the culture by seeing how things are slightly (or materially) different with what we have in our home town. 

Also, the food in McDonald's Thailand, especially the kra pao is certainly something that I'd recommend you to try! Yes, of course pair it up with milk tea as well. 

Thanks for reading. Let me know your thoughts by commenting down below. 

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