With little else to do on the Sunday afternoon before Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Chris Fludas K’16 and I set off to answer a question that burned deep inside both of us: is The Big Burrito’s half-off discount worth a two hour walk?
We left Kalamazoo College’s campus at 3:30pm with a coupon for a free quesadilla or ½ off a big burrito at The Big Burrito in Kalamazoo. After two major navigation setbacks, we made it to The Big Burrito around 5:30pm, tired albeit ready to eat.
We ordered our 12-inch beef burrito with tomatoes, onions, refried beans, cheese, and lettuce for just over five dollars. Our total cost: five dollars, some change, and two hours of our lives. We sat down in the small Mexican themed dining room and about five minutes later our burrito was in front of us. The kitchen had pre-split the burrito but the two halves were still huge. Very unceremoniously we dug in.
I’m no burrito expert but I enjoy a good burrito.That being said, the Big Burrito at The Big Burrito was good. It was what I look for in a ten dollar, 12 inch burrito–greasy beef, heavyily refried beans, and thinly cut lettuce. However, both Fludas and I quickly found the tortilla’s meager thickess rather problematic. The overwhelmingly thin tortilla led us to the conclusion that no, in the case of the Big Burrito, a two hour walk is not worth half-off a ten-dollar burrito.
We looked to confirm our findings with fellow customers and had the lucky chance to run into fellow K students Jordan Skidmore K’16, Abby Calef K’15, and Sophie Martin K’15, each of whom also utilized their coupons.
Skidmore said he went to The Big Burrito “because [I] had a coupon and wanted free dinner.”
Skidmore and Calef ordered a pulled chicken quesadilla. Martin ordered a beef quesadilla but paid a dollar and six cents for extra fillings.
In all, Big Burrito made one dollar and six cents from the group of three who had driven across town because as Martian said “I had a coupon and I wanted free food.
We also learned from Martin that she did not utilize her Cottage Inn coupon last year, as she didn’t have a car.
We asked two Big Burrito employees Tommy Harker and Will Whittington for their thoughts on the effectiveness of the coupons distributed to K students.
“We see an increase in customers, obviously it’s good for business. But the owner keeps all the numbers a secret,” Harker said.
“It’s kinda [sic] hard to tell at this point because regardless of whatever promotion we put out, we’re going to see an increase in customers with the students coming back from break,” said Whittington.
Unless you very much enjoy walking, we do advise strongly against making the hike to The Big Burrito on foot, but we do advise driving over there any time and smashing some delicious burritos.
Although we found that a half-off burrito is not worth a two hour walk, we still had an awesome day finding out. To top it off, Skidmore gave us a ride back to campus.