McDonald's, Subway meals among top business expenses

April 19, 2013

A new report from Certify, a travel and expense management software provider, shows that business travelers gravitate toward Subway for lunch and McDonald's for dinner.

The quarterly Certify SpendSmart Report analyzes vendors, expense amounts and satisfaction rating data on business expenses collected directly from end-users. Certify SpendSmart handles millions of receipts and expenses to provide insights about the business travel industry.

The report shows that Subway claimed 3.11 percent of all lunch expenses, averaging $10.79 per receipt.

For dinner, McDonald's was the most expensed vendor, followed by Outback Steakhouse and Chili's.

Starbucks is the breakfast of choice for business travelers, with 14.14 percent of expenses, averaging $7.86 per receipt.

Vendors with the highest average customer satisfaction rating include Chick-fil-A and Starbucks, as well as Westin Hotels, Southwest Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Amazon, Whole Foods, USPS and Publix.

Broken down by category and region:

Most-expensed restaurants:

  1. Starbucks: 5.05 percent of expenses, averaging $9.03
  2. McDonald's: 2.85 percent, averaging $8.03
  3. Subway: 1.64 percent, averaging $14.01
  4. Panera Bread: 1.43 percent, averaging $35.99
  5. HMS Host: 1.33 percent, averaging $14.62

Regional highlights:

  • Atlanta: Chick-fil-A beats McDonald's as most expensed restaurant in Atlanta with 2.01 percent of meals compared to McDonald's 1.85 percent.
  • Boston: In Boston, Dunkin Donuts approaches the popularity of Starbucks with 4.5 percent of meals, compared to Starbucks at 6.92 percent.
  • Dallas: Starbucks beats McDonald's in Dallas by more than double, with 8.98 percent of meals expenses compared to McDonald's 3.27 percent. Starbucks was also rated higher with 4.2 stars compared to McDonald's 4.0.
  • New York: Seamless claims 8.07 percent of all meals, with average expense amount of $29.27. Just behind Seamless, Starbucks claims second most expensed vendor for meals and takes the spot for highest rated vendor with a 5 out of 5 stars.
  • San Francisco:Square Inc. is reported as a vendor so many times in San Francisco that it claims top spot in the general category with 8.85 percent of general expenses.

Certify's cloud-based travel and expense software has been tracking corporate travel and expense data since 2009.

"The SpendSmart Report tells us which vendors are delivering the best customer satisfaction levels. When compared with average expense amounts and popularity rankings, our customers can learn which vendors provide the best value overall," said Robert Neveu, CEO of Certify.

Read more about restaurant trends.

Topics: Customer Service / Experience , Trends / Statistics

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