Queens McDonald’s at war with elderly ‘seat-hogging’ customers

FLUSHING, Queens (PIX11) - A McDonald’s in Flushing, Queens give’s customers 20 minutes to gobble down their meal.  But some are overstaying their welcome big time–and the restaurant is trying to give them the boot.

The fast food franchise is complaining that clusters of seniors linger for hours as they nurse a coffee or share a bag of fries while chatting with each other,  and it’s hurting their business.

“I’m sure you can imagine any business would find this situation to be difficult when customers prevent other customers from enjoying the restaurant,” said McDonald’s franchisee Jack Bert.  “We continue to resolve this situation and create an environment so customers who wish to enjoy this restaurant have the ability to do so.”

One customer, through a translator, told PIX 11 he was recently removed by police for staying too long.

The elderly folks are apparently stuck on this particular McDonald’s on the corner of Parsons and Northern Boulevards, even though there are other fast food joints in the neighborhood, and other places to hang out, including senior centers.

“They don’t know where to find out about stuff like that cause there’s a language barrier between people around here,” said Richard Kim who works next door.  “It’s also cause it’s convenient because it’s right next to their apartments.”

Can McDonald’s legally kick out customers for eating too slow?“I don’t think they’re making trouble.  They just want to hang out and talk,” said customer Phil Mok.

But McDonald’s regular Rose Fyffe said she can see how they’re driving away business.  “Sure, because they have less customers.”

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