Dynamic Pricing: Why Your Wendy’s Meal Might Cost More or Less Lesson

Students learn a lesson on the shift towards dynamic pricing in the fast food industry, with a focus on Wendy’s innovative strategy. This lesson explains how Wendy’s uses demand-based pricing, similar to airlines and ride-sharing apps, to adjust meal costs. It highlights the reasons for this shift, such as enhancing customer service and efficiency, and discusses its impact on price affordability and dining convenience.

The lesson also touches on the technology behind these changes and how other industry players like McDonald’s and Coca Cola in Japan are adopting similar trends. Through this overview, students understand how dynamic pricing could affect their dining experiences, offering insights into saving money and the broader implications for fast food consumption.


Use this video lesson on the topic of Budgeting and Saving Money. Learn related concepts of

  • Savings Strategies
  • Debt Management
  • Buying Goods
  • Using Credit


9-12th grades. High School. Adult Education.


30-45 Minutes. It may be necessary to adjust the lesson plan and allocate more or less time to certain topics, depending on the needs and interests of the students. More in-depth lesson plan below will be longer.


Hand out the worksheet below (see the GET LESSON button near the bottom of the page).

Show students the video and have and have them complete the worksheet.  Review the questions on the worksheet.  For a more in-depth lesson, complete the lesson plan below.

Dynamic Pricing: Why Your Wendy’s Meal Might Cost More (or Less)!

After watching the video, ask students to summarize the main points made in the video.


Lesson Plan: Dynamic Pricing in Fast Food

To understand the concept of dynamic pricing and its implications in the fast food industry, focusing on Wendy’s experimentation with surge pricing.

Materials Needed:

  • Video: “Dynamic Pricing: Why Your Wendy’s Meal Might Cost More (or Less)!”
  • Access to internet and a projector for video playback
  • Quiz based on the video content
  • Handouts with discussion questions

Lesson Duration: 50 minutes

Lesson Outline:

  1. Introduction (5 minutes)
    • Briefly explain the concept of dynamic pricing.
    • Introduce the video and its relevance to the current fast food industry trends.
  2. Video Viewing (15 minutes)
    • Play the “Dynamic Pricing: Why Your Wendy’s Meal Might Cost More (or Less)!” video.
    • Ensure all students are focused and taking notes if necessary.
  3. Discussion (15 minutes)
    • Break the class into small groups and distribute the handouts with discussion questions.
    • Encourage students to share their thoughts and insights on dynamic pricing and its potential effects on consumer behavior.
  4. Activity (10 minutes)
    • Engage students in a role-play activity where some are customers and others are restaurant managers deciding on pricing strategies.
    • Discuss the challenges and benefits of implementing dynamic pricing from both perspectives.
  5. Quiz (5 minutes)
    • Conclude the lesson with a short quiz to assess understanding of dynamic pricing principles and specific details from the Wendy’s case study.

Discussion Questions:

  • How does dynamic pricing work, and why is Wendy’s testing this model?
  • What are the potential benefits and drawbacks of dynamic pricing for consumers?
  • How might dynamic pricing affect fast food workers and operational efficiency?
  • Do you think dynamic pricing will become the new norm in the fast food industry? Why or why not?
  • How do personal values and consumer rights intersect with the concept of dynamic pricing in fast food?

Homework Assignment:

  • Write a one-page reflection on how dynamic pricing could affect your personal dining habits and whether you support this trend.

Lesson Resources

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