The lineup at the new Shake Shack yesterday in Mexico City. The lineup at the new Shake Shack yesterday in Mexico City.

Burger King offers free drinks in lineup at new competitor Shake Shack

The upscale casual burger restaurant opened its first Mexican restaurant on Reforma avenue in Mexico City

Burger rivalries were on full display at the grand opening of Shake Shack on Thursday, as Burger King took advantage of long lines to promote its brand.

Shake Shack, a United States burger chain, opened its first store in Mexico on Thursday at 333 Reforma avenue in Mexico City.

When the doors opened at noon, people were already lined up to be among the first to try the new restaurant. Two brothers even slept in front of the restaurant the night before. But for those who hadn’t come out so early, the wait time was as long as two hours.

That’s when Burger King representatives showed up and started handing out free drinks, coupons and paper crowns. Shake Shack employees responded by handing out free lemonade.

Carlos Alverde, director of the Grupo Toks, which runs Shake Shack in Mexico, said that he isn’t worried about Burger King’s antics at the Shake Shack opening.

“We were surprised by what Burger King did, honestly,” he told the newspaper El Financiero. “They were handing out coupons for hamburgers for today, and I think it’s really funny they have to act like that.”

Alverde added that he thinks the event illustrates the difference between the two brands.

“I prefer to charge for something good than to give away something bad,” he said. “We’re very happy, the customers are recognizing the quality of our products.”

Hamburger prices range from 85 to 189 pesos (US $4.40 to $9.85); a hot dog costs 80 to 90 pesos.

There are also menu options for hungry pets; Shake Shack is pet-friendly.

Grupo Toks plans to open a total of 30 outlets in Mexico by 2028.

According to Euromonitor, the hamburger market in Mexico is worth US $1.1 billion, and is projected to grow 23% by 2023.

Source: El Financiero (sp)

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