Hot on the heels of Red Lobster shuttering at least of 100 its US locations, another popular food franchise has announced this week that they're downsizing too. Multiple news outlets are reporting that Applebee's has announced the closure of 35 restaurants.

Read More: Montana's Only Red Lobster is Not on the Closing List

The West End Applebee's in Billings, MT. Credit Google Maps
The West End Applebee's in Billings, MT. Credit Google Maps

Will the Montana Applebee's locations stay open?

Per reports, Applebee's has not released which specific franchise locations are set to close. The parent company, Dine Brands, operates a total of seven Applebee's in Montana and four in Wyoming. The Montana locations include:

  • Billings (Heights and West End)
  • Bozeman
  • Missoula
  • Kalispell
  • Great Falls
  • Helena

In Wyoming, you can be "eating good in the neighborhood" in Cheyenne, Gillette, Laramie, and Rock Springs.

Credit Applebee's
Credit Applebee's

A difficult time for large franchise brands.

Applebee's began closing locations back in 2017, notes, with hundreds of locations shutting their doors in the last seven years. Dine Brands also owns IHOP and Fuzzy's Taco Shop.

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The company is reportedly focusing on boosting those other brands, and in some cases combining Applebee's and IHOP into one restaurant under the same roof. Similar to Yum Brands Pizza Hut/Taco Bell/KFC all-in-one concept.

Cheap drinks and mediocre food.

Opinion: I don't hate Applebee's. However, it's never my first (or even top 10) option that I consider when dining out in Montana. The company seems to be counting on its efforts to lure in customers with ridiculously inexpensive drinks and affordable boneless chicken wings. They brought back their limited-time $1 margaritas, cleverly named Dollaritas, on May 1st this year.

Perhaps it's time for country singer Walker Hayes to do a follow-up song to his smash hit, 'Fancy Like', which extolled the virtues of a date night at Applebee's. The company experienced a significant sales boost when the 2021 song hit the airwaves.

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