Taco Bell tests a subscription taco pass

The Taco Lover’s Pass, currently launching only at units in Tucson, Ariz., is available via the chain’s app and allows the user to redeem one taco per day for 30 days.
Taco Bell Taco Pass
Photo courtesy of Taco Bell

Taco Bell is testing a 30-day taco subscription service that can only be purchased via the chain’s app, the quick-service brand announced Monday.

The Taco Lover’s Pass, which sells for between $5 and $10 depending on location, allows users to redeem one Taco Bell original taco per day for a month. It is currently being tested for a limited time at 17 units in Tucson, Ariz., the company said.

Free taco choices include the Crunchy Taco, Spicy Potato Soft Taco, Crunchy Supreme Taco, Soft Supreme Taco, Doritos Locos Tacos and the Doritos Locos Tacos Supreme. The pass is available under the Online Exclusives section of the Taco Bell app.

The Irvine, Calif.-based chain called the subscription “a digitally exclusive offering that gives fans the chance to satisfy their taco cravings every day for 30 days.”

Even at $10 for the month, the subscription is quite a good deal for diners: One Crunchy Taco Supreme, for example, is listed at $1.99 and a Crunchy Taco is $1.49 on the website of one of Taco Bell’s Tucson, Ariz., stores.

In addition to incentivizing use of the taco chain’s app, it is likely Taco Bell is hoping diners will order more than just their one free taco each day. Such has been the case with other restaurant chains that have recently implemented subscription programs.

Panera Bread launched an unlimited coffee subscription program in late February 2020. Diners pay $8.99 per month to get any size and any flavor of hot coffee, hot tea or iced coffee once every two hours. By October of that year, Panera had signed up nearly 500,000 paying subscribers, the fast casual’s CEO said.

The program boasted some strong results, with 90% incrementality, 35% of those free coffee orders with food attached and 35% of subscribers considered new customers.

“Even when the program was being offered for free a couple of months ago, it was still profit accretive for us,” Panera CEO Niren Chaudhary said last October. “We’re very excited. It’s a program that works for us.”

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit also launched meal subscription boxes, featuring proteins, sides and desserts for home delivery.

And casual dining chain BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse recently expanded the locations that offer its beer subscription program, which debuted last November. For a $30 fee, club members receive to-go bottled and canned brews, as well as a takeout pizza, discounts on growler refills and other perks.

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