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This Is How McDonald’s Prices in 2024 Compare to Five Years Ago

Over the past five years, the cost of enjoying a meal at McDonald’s has significantly climbed, reflecting broader economic trends and the impact of inflation on consumer spending habits. This change is noticeable and impactful for regular patrons of the Golden Arches, especially when comparing McDonald’s prices in 2024 to those from 2019.

McDonald’s Prices in 2024: The Data Comparison 

In a detailed analysis, TheStreet tapped into archived data from to trace the trajectory of McDonald’s pricing over half a decade. The findings are quite stark: there’s been an average increase of 141.4 percent across several key menu items. This steep rise is more pronounced when you look at individual products. For instance, the cost of medium French fries has jumped from $1.79 to $4.19, marking a 134.1 percent increase. Similarly, the McChicken sandwich price soared by 201.6 percent, escalating from $1.29 to an eye-watering $3.89.

McDonald's prices in 2024.

Elise Armitage | MSN | The McChicken sandwich price soared by 201.6 percent, escalating from $1.29 to an eye-watering $3.89.

Even the iconic Big Mac wasn’t spared, with its price tag swelling by 87.7 percent to reach $7.49. The price for an order of 10 McNuggets has risen to $7.58, up 68.8 percent. Cheeseburgers have seen the most dramatic increase in the various items analysed, skyrocketing by 215 percent from a mere dollar to $3.15.

What’s Driving McDonald’s Price Hikes?

Several factors contribute to McDonald’s upward movement in prices, with inflation being the primary driver. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, general prices increased by about 21.5 percent from the end of 2019 to March 2024, far less than the hikes observed at McDonald’s. This discrepancy suggests that other operational and market dynamics are at play, possibly including rising labor costs, supply chain challenges, and changes in consumer demand.

McDonald's prices in 2024.

Elise Armitage | MSN | McDonald’s general prices increased by about 21.5 percent from the end of 2019 to March 2024.

Economic Implications and Public Sentiment

As the U.S. approaches the November elections, the state of the economy is a hot-button issue, with President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump poised to debate it vigorously. As captured by a Financial Times poll, public sentiment shows significant concern over high food prices, which nearly three-quarters of U.S. voters feel are impacting their finances the most. This sentiment could be crucial in the voting booth, as 41 percent of voters express greater trust in Trump’s economic management than 35 percent in Biden.

McDonald's prices in 2024.

Elise Armitage | MSN | Inflation is the primary driver in McDonald’s upward price movement.

With Trump claiming his tenure featured “the greatest economy in history” and Biden pushing for increased taxes on large corporations and high-income individuals, the debate over who can better manage the nation’s economic challenges is set to intensify. This political backdrop adds another layer of complexity to McDonald’s rising prices in 2024, making it a microcosm of more significant economic debates and decisions.


This steep climb in McDonald’s prices from 2019 to 2024 affects millions of Americans’ pocketbooks and mirrors the economic anxieties that permeate consumer markets. With inflation outstripping wage growth for many, the increased cost of fast-food—a staple of American diet and culture—translates into real-world dilemmas about spending and saving. Thus, the pricing at McDonald’s serves as a barometer for broader economic conditions, offering insights into the challenges and changes that have reshaped the landscape of American consumerism.

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