Yes, that Baconator meal from Wendy's might be more expensive depending on when and where you get that burger. The fast-food giant has announced they're going to begin testing dynamic pricing. Good for Wendy's profits, not so good for our wallets, that is, if the pricing plan doesn't backfire horribly on the fast food giant.

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According to KCTV 5, Wendy's CEO Kirk Tanner announced the experiment during a call with investors.

Dynamic pricing means Wendy's menu prices will change based on time, location, and demand. Logically, during peak times, say during lunch or dinner, Wendy's will charge more for your Baconator, fires, and a Coke, than in the middle of the afternoon when most people have already had lunch.

It also means menu items might cost more if you go at other busy times. For example, Wendy's, McDonald's, and Sonic in Warrensburg are busy on Friday nights in the fall between 10:00 PM and 11:00 PM. Under Wendy's dynamic pricing plan, those in the drive-through at Wendy's during that time would pay more for their food because the restaurant is busy.

What sticks in my craw about Wendy's dynamic pricing scheme is this. They are a restaurant. People customarily eat breakfast between 6-9, lunch 11-1, dinner 5-8. I find it distasteful to charge people more because they want to have a meal at a traditional mealtime. Or just because my Wendy's location is busy on Friday nights during high school football season.

Doug Sokolowski saw me respond to a Facebook post on the subject, where I said I'd probably go somewhere else, and posed an interesting question. I'm paraphrasing here, he asked, what's the difference between a restaurant setting a standard price and then rather than raising prices for lunch, offering happy hour pricing between certain hours?

The difference is in the customers' perception of what they're paying for. If I save a buck off the menu price because I'm eating lunch late or having a late-night dinner, ok. If I'm paying a buck or two more for the privilege of eating when people customarily eat their meals, that's just odd. It doesn't sit well with me.

Wendy's is already the most expensive fast-food chain according to Yahoo Finance. I like their burgers, and their stores' staffs in Sedalia and Warrensburg are some of the best working in local fast food joints. That said, for me, dynamic pricing when it comes to fast-food is a turn-off.

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