More territory, lower costs equal better opportunity

In Taco Bell vs. Taco John’s, guess who comes out on top?

Taco John's franchise drive thru
While competing in the same fast food category, Taco John’s offers some surprising advantages over Taco Bell.

If you’ve been considering a Mexican food franchise, you’ve undoubtedly thought about Taco Bell. How could you not? It’s a well-known national brand with catchy ads and, frankly, market dominance in the Mexican fast-food segment. But that lack of competition will ultimately be an advantage for Taco John’s.

When you take a look at Taco Bell vs. Taco John’s, you’re going to see a few things you might expect — yes, their AUV is slightly higher — as well as a few surprises. Overall, there are fewer upfront and ongoing costs associated with investing in a Taco John’s franchise. Take a look at some of the numbers in this side-by-side comparison:


Taco John's startup_costs are $944,500 - $1,289,000; Ongoing royalty fees are 5%; Ad Royalty Fees are 4%; Franchise Fee is $25,000; Number of units over 390* versus Taco Bell Startup costs are $1,177,300 to $2,620,600; Ongoing royalty fees are 5.5%; Ad royalty fees are 4.25%; Franchise fee is $45,000; Number of units is 5,227. *Open or in development - sources:, QSR Magazine, Taco Bell Franchise Disclosure Document, Taco John's Franchise Disclosure Document

How we’re winning the category

As you can see, there are some distinct advantages to joining the Taco John’s family. Perhaps one of the biggest is our territory availability. Taco Bell has over 5,000 units nationwide, which can make it challenging to find locations, because it’s already in most larger markets. But Taco John’s has room to grow. We’re expanding our Cheyenne, Wyoming-based franchise into open markets east of the Mississippi and have inked large, multi-unit deals in New York and Tennessee.

In 2015, we signed commitments for 19 future locations to be developed in the coming years; in 2016, we have already signed commitments for over 50 future locations to be developed in the coming years.

Americans spend an estimated $39 billion a year at Mexican restaurants, according to CHD Expert, and the presence of only one nationwide competitor leaves the field wide open. While offering the convenience of a drive-thru, Taco John’s food is of a much better quality than typical fast-food fare. We think our 20 consecutive years of same-store sales growth are evidence of consumers’ growing preference for higher quality food.

Taco John's franchise - burrito
Taco John’s has maintained a commitment to fresh, bold, authentic Mexican flavors since our inception in 1969.

A difference guests can taste

Our commitment to using real, fresh ingredients is another differentiator between us and Taco Bell. We originated Taco Tuesday®, and we have the bold, authentic flavors consumers have come to expect with Mexican cuisine. Bob Karisny, Vice President for Menu Strategy and Innovation, leads a team of culinary experts who are working on menu items on a daily basis and also conduct extensive “taco tours” through destination cities in the U.S. and Mexico. They keep our menu balanced between longtime customer favorites, like our Potato Oles®, and LTOs like our Street Tacos that help introduce the brand to new guests.

If you are looking for an opportunity in the Mexican fast-food category, this is now an excellent time to consider Taco John’s.


When it comes down to Taco Bell vs. Taco John’s, only you can make the decision that’s best for you. To help you make an informed decision, you can explore  our research pages to learn more about the market opportunity with Taco John’s. You can also fill out a form to download our free franchise report and start a conversation with one of our responsive franchise representatives.


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