Those glowing golden arches have always been a welcome sign to weary travellers, excited children and those have over indulged the night before. Like any successful brand, McDonalds has evolved and changed over time. Recently the Norwich Airport McDonalds has had a huge makeover. It’s bright, bold, welcoming and packed full of exciting technological features. The customer has always been at the heart of everything McDonalds does, but now even more so. I was invited down along with a group of other bloggers to go behind the scenes at your new McDonalds at Norwich Airport. I even got to make my own bun-less Big Mac – best night ever!
As a 90’s kid, McDonalds used to be a treat. I would head there with my grandparents for a happy meal now and again or for a birthday party. I mean if you had your birthday at McDonalds you were the coolest kid ever. Now I tend to visit on long road trips or when I’m feeling too lazy to cook! I always used to find McDonalds a rather nostalgic place to be, but now it’s the kind of place I would quite happily sit with my laptop and work for a few hours. It has a cool, creative feel.
Your New McDonalds
Gone are the days of having to queue up, getting to the front of the line, forgetting your order or saying something silly! McDonalds at Norwich airport now has self order points, so you can browse the menu at your own pace and customise your meal. You can add and remove items to your hearts content – don’t like pickles? Remove them! Love cheese? Add an extra slice! Or if you’re like me, you can remove the bun on your burger. The machines are also fully accessible, so if you’re a wheelchair user, you can press a button and the screen will shrink to a suitable height for you.
McDonalds also have an app where you can pre load your order onto your phone, it will generate a code to scan and do all of the ordering for you. I imagine this will come in handy if you have a party of children or if you are doing the office breakfast order. If you’re not a fan of technology fear not – McDonalds have a couple of friendly hosts who will greet you and can help you with using the machine.
There’s table service too. Essentially McDonalds have taken all of the hassle and stress out of the ordering your meal. After a few taps of a screen, you can sit back, relax and await your meal. If you’re visiting with little ones – I imagine this is even more of a godsend.
Alongside the ordering machines, there are iPads for customers to use. Air charging and charging points so you can work or ‘gram away and a rather cool magic table for kids (or adults!). The magic table is a projector that uses sensors allowing people to play games projected onto one of the tables. We had so much fun playing the various games, though it all got a little bit competitive! It’s also a great use of technology to keep the little ones entertained. Though I dare say later at night it’ll be teenagers and adults embracing their inner children.
Fresh, delicious food, fast!
I was also lucky enough to be able to head into the kitchen to make my own bun-less Big Mac and discover more about the ingredients used. McDonalds only use fresh ingredients from British farmers. Members of staff have even visited the farms in neighbouring Lincolnshire. They have been reducing the amount of salt used and offer a wide ranger of ‘healthy’ options. So if you thought McDonalds wasn’t fresh or was full of crap – think again! Over the last few years they have well and truly proven that this is not the case.
The kitchen itself is run like a military operation. This ensures that certain standards are maintained, the correct amount of ingredients are used and that the food is made fresh and quickly. For example, all of the burgers are kept in colour coded trays with fish, meat and veggie patties separate from each other. They all have their own set of tongs and there are colour coded lights telling kitchen staff which tray to use first. When the light goes red, the product can’t be used anymore as it has been out too long. So you always know that your food is fresh and hot!
Fun McDonalds Food Facts
Ok, so I didn’t get to see the ingredients in the Big Mac sauce but it does come in a rather cool gun dispenser ensuring that the exact amount of product is used. The pickles on your burger should be kissing (touching) and not hugging (over lapping) It’s one of their golden rules! Finally your chips are housed in a self dispensing freezer ensuring that they are cooked fresh.
Your new McDonalds at Norwich Airport is actually a franchise (the owner also has Brundall and Tuckswood.) So you’re supporting a local businessman who employs, trains and supports local people. They also support local sports teams and have participated in a number of initiatives to get adults and kids moving. The main charity McDonalds supports is the RMHC which helps families of sick children by offering them a home away from home. It’s a fantastic charity who have supported people that I know.
On October 21st the three stores will be holding a charity fundraising day. Staff will be dressing up as their favourite book characters and there will be a number of activities for kids going on throughout the day. So if you get chance, pop along and do your bit!
Overall, I had an amazing evening at the new McDonalds at Norwich airport. It changed my perspective of McDonalds for the better. My Big Mac tasted even more delicious knowing where the ingredients came from and how it was made. The staff were so friendly and welcoming to every single person (not just us). You tell that they loved working there. It was like we were part of a community for the evening. McDonalds has gone from a nostalgic place that I used to adore for birthday parties, to a friendly and welcoming space where I’d write happily pitch up with my laptop and work for a while.
What do you think of the new and improved McDonalds?
With thanks to the team at Norwich Airport McDonalds. If you want to know more about McDonalds values and policies, click here. McDonalds Norwich Airport has their own Twitter page so give them a follow!