The ‘cartel’ formed by the kopitiams (traditional Chinese style coffee shops) in KL and Selangor has decided to raise the price of drinks starting from January 2011.
A glass of coffee is now priced at RM1.40, up 20 sen from last year. A bowl of noodle is about RM4. So, a simple breakfast at kopitiam costs more than RM5, which isn’t so much cheaper than a breakfast in McDonalds’.
For the record, the breakfast set of ‘2 piece hotcakes’ plus coffee in McDonald’s comes to less than RM5. Better still, in the Golden Arches restaurants, you get cleaner environment, air-conditioning, free coffee refill and free Wifi. You can even pick up a copy of The Sun newspaper in certain outlets.
The kopitiams justify their price hike by citing the increase in material cost. I am sure McDonald’s cannot escape the inflation too, but it somehow manages to keep the price steady. In fact, McDonald’s lowered the price of the breakfast sets in 2010. Also, bear in mind that kopitiams hire lots of low wage migrant workers. Employees in the Golden Arches outlets are predominantly Malaysians.
Two words explain why McDonald’s is able to keep the price low: cost cutting. This is something traditional kopitiams must emulate, if they want to stay competitive in the coming decade. Consumers have choice…