Subway – EMEA Regional Restaurant Format Design




Brand and Communications · Customer Experience · Hospitality Experience & Design

M Worldwide Subway local branch

The Challenge

Subway remains the world’s largest franchise operation with 37,000+ locations. They are in more than 100 countries including 42 within the EMEA. 

As part of a global review of their restaurant experience and design, Subway research identified that the EMEA format needed to respond to regional preferences. There were 4 key objectives:


  1. Subway identified they could do more to connect and communicate to customers in terms of the brand essence and character.
  2. In general customers didn’t spend enough time in the restaurants in comparison to competitors, treating the whole experience with more of a takeaway mindset. Comfort was highlighted for key targets, for example young adult friendship groups and young families.
  3. Self-serve kiosks and ‘Pick-up’ process was an essential new ingredient to be carefully integrated, ensuring that the customer choice to use the unique Subway makeline remained clear and present.
  4. ‘Kerb appeal’ could be improved with an attractive view into a range of different zones.

The Solution

M Worldwide designed an experience that mobilises both the environment and communications to surprise and delight.

The ‘Fresh Forward 2.0’ format attracts and connects to existing and new-to-franchise customers with large impact communications, local messaging, and a comfortable restaurant that is designed for groups or singles who either want to drop in to collect or spend time and relax. 

The self-serve kiosks and ‘Pick-up’ zone are clearly signed, enabling fast customer journeys including App-based order collections. The experience for the seated spaces is elevated through softer, more comfortable materials, improved local lighting and ceiling detailing. 

Key vistas are used to communicate the brand storytelling with large format messaging and local welcome messaging.

The fit out exercise was cost neutral and the customer response has been hugely positive.