Data shows that BTS is the most popular K-Pop group in Indonesia, and Indonesian K-Pop fans spend more time consuming content than any other country. So it should come as no surprise that the “BTS Meal” has drawn excitement across the country. However, within hours of the meal’s launch, numerous Indonesian McDonald’s restaurants have been forced to close due to immense demand.
The “BTS Meal” has been widely popular since it first launched back in May, with numerous ARMYs and non-fans alike flocking to McDonald’s to place their orders. While the McNuggets, fries, and Coca-Cola have been long-time favorites for years, the “BTS Meal” comes with two new dipping sauces (Cajun and Sweet Chili) as well as limited edition packaging in several countries.
After waiting several weeks since the initial launch date, Indonesian ARMYs were finally in luck on June 9 when the “BTS Meal” finally became available in McDonald’s restaurants across Indonesia. However, it seems that no one could prepare for just how much demand there’d be. After the buying frenzy skyrocketed within hours, more than a dozen Indonesian McDonald’s outlets have been forced to close.
With Indonesia still under partial lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many residents have turned to the on-demand food delivery service Gojek to get their fast-food fix. So, when the “BTS Meal” finally launched nationwide, numerous fans were quick to place their orders—so quick, in fact, that outlets soon became flooded with demand.
After McDonald’s restaurants found themselves packed to the brim with Gojek drivers, leaving no room for social distancing, local authorities have had no choice but to close them temporarily to prevent the spread of COVID-19. So far, at least 13 outlets across Jakarta and other major locales have stopped serving the “BTS Meal” and closed their doors.
Fajar Purwoto, the head of Semarang’s public order agency, stated, “We temporarily closed four of six McDonald’s stores here in Semarang for a couple of days. I don’t want Semarang to be in the COVID-19 red zone again.” While Jakarta authorities have not yet issued a statement, local media networks say five restaurants there have been shut.
As of right now, it’s unclear when these restaurants will be able to open again, or whether more will need to close in the coming days if demand increases.