Franchise 500

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

Instead of buying a Subway franchise, you could splurge on 15,478 Italian hoagies, a lifetime of train passes and other cool things.
Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise
Image credit: tupungato | Getty Images
Entrepreneur Staff
Associate Editor, Contributed Content
3 min read

Subway is ranked as the 14th best restaurant in our Franchise 500 list. It costs between $147,050 and $320,700 to buy one of those franchises.

That definitely seems like a big investment. But, just as with any purchase -- or any choice, for that matter -- you have to consider what your alternatives are.

For example, instead of buying even the cheapest Subway franchise, you could, theoretically, get 37 Jan-Pro home-based franchises, which go for as little as $3,985.

But, Subway's six-figure price tag is actually much less expensive than other restaurant franchise options. McDonald's, our top-ranked restaurant, will run you at least $1 million. In that respect, then, a Subway franchise costs about seven times less than the cheapest McDonald's.

That makes it seem almost like a bargain.

In this slideshow, we're breaking down exactly how far $147,050 -- the minimum amount you would need to buy a Subway franchise -- can take you, whether you're thinking about investing in a different franchise, considering business school or just want to buy all of the Subway sandwiches at once.

Related: Our Top 10 Franchises You Can Buy

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

Instead of a Subway franchise, you could buy 15,478 Italian BMTs

Instead of a Subway franchise, you could buy 15,478 Italian BMTs
Image credit: Subway | Facebook

There's an important distinction to be made here. You can buy 15,478 Italian BMTs by themselves, because an Italian BMT -- at least at my local subway -- costs $9.50. If you want the combo, with a drink and a side, then that's going to cost an extra $3.10, which would bring down your sandwich count to 11,670.

Related: Just How Much Does It Cost to Own a Fast-Food Franchise?

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

The cheapest Subway costs 101 years' worth of New York City MetroCards.

The cheapest Subway costs 101 years' worth of New York City MetroCards.
Image credit: Laurentiu Garofeanu | Barcoft Media | Getty Images

If you're a New Yorker like me -- or just someone who uses public transportation -- your first association with the word "subway" might be with the overcrowded, underground train tunnels running beneath major metropolitan areas. So, if you wondered, like I did, about the ratio from Subway access to subway access, then here it is: a New York city unlimited monthly pass costs $121. The lowest price of a Subway restaurant costs $147,050. That means you can buy 1,215 subway passes for one Subway. 

Glad we cleared that up.

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

The cheapest Subway costs 3.72 of the cheapest Doc Popcorns.

The cheapest Subway costs 3.72 of the cheapest Doc Popcorns.
Image credit: Doc Popcorn | Facebook

At $39,500, the cheapest Doc Popcorn is the only food-related franchise on our list of best franchises under $60,000. While the most expensive Doc Popcorn ($345,050) is actually costlier than the most expensive Subway ($320,700), the cheapest Doc Popcorn is about a quarter the cost of the cheapest Subway.

Related: The 5 Best Burger Franchises You Can Buy (and How Much They Cost)

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

The cheapest Subway costs 1.18 of the cheapest Firehouse Subs.

The cheapest Subway costs 1.18 of the cheapest Firehouse Subs.
Image credit: Firehouse Subs | Facebook

The cheapest Firehouse Subs franchise (ranked 15th overall and seventh among restaurants) goes for $124,678. The cheapest Subway franchise goes for $147,050.

You can't exactly buy 1.18 of a franchise, but you definitely can buy a single Firehouse Subs and then pocket the $22,372 difference.

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

The cheapest Subway franchise costs 0.76 of the cheapest Jersey Mike's.

The cheapest Subway franchise costs 0.76 of the cheapest Jersey Mike's.
Image credit: Jersey Mike's | Facebook

The lowest initial investment for Jersey Mike's (our 21st-ranked franchise and 11th-ranked restaurant) according to our database is $193,204, which is $46,154 more than the lowest initial investment for a Subway franchise.

Related: 5 Low-Cost Franchises You Can Start for as Little as $4,000

Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise

The cheapest Subway franchise costs 0.69 Harvard MBAs.

The cheapest Subway franchise costs 0.69 Harvard MBAs.
Image credit: Brooks Kraft LLC | Corbis | Getty Images
According to the Harvard website, the student budget for the MBA class of 2019 is $106,800 for one year. Since the MBA takes two years to complete, we can estimate it costs about $213,600, or 1.45 Subways to complete Harvard Business School. 
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  • Here Are 6 Things You Could Buy for the Price of One Subway Franchise
  • Instead of a Subway franchise, you could buy 15,478 Italian BMTs
  • The cheapest Subway costs 101 years' worth of New York City MetroCards.
  • The cheapest Subway costs 3.72 of the cheapest Doc Popcorns.
  • The cheapest Subway costs 1.18 of the cheapest Firehouse Subs.
  • The cheapest Subway franchise costs 0.76 of the cheapest Jersey Mike's.
  • The cheapest Subway franchise costs 0.69 Harvard MBAs.
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