It's not like there aren't any Subway locations left in Montana. But the once-on-every-corner chain is certainly struggling.

Company officials believe they're making progress with their "multi-year transformation" of the chain, which was launched in 2021 as Subway was trying to cope with the upset of the pandemic.

Now, Subway is hoping the latest additions, which focus on sides and snacks, will be a key part of maintaining traffic.

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Subway's Heyday

Before the pandemic, if you wanted a quick lunch in our part of Missoula, there were three different Subway locations to choose from. When I moved here in 2007, I was pleasantly surprised to find you could still get a Subway meal deal for less than $4, compared with prices over $5 in the Seattle region. But by the time COVID came around, it took the better part of $8 for the same meal.

Subway photo
Subway photo

And like so many food outlets, many Subway franchise owners were slammed with staffing and revenue issues. Currently, there are only 3 remaining Subways in all of Missoula, and one of those is "temporarily" closed. Kalispell still has 4, including an in-store Subway at Walmart, while small towns like Hamilton have been able to hang on to a single location.

RELATED: Missoula subway location replaced

Subway turns to Sidekicks

Now, Subway is debuting new menu items they call "Sidekicks", which is a collection of new footlong snacks, which the company says is "the perfect pairing for their favorite footlong, or as a sweet or savory snack any time of day." The Sidekicks are rolling out this week.

How much will the new treats cost?

Subway teamed with Cinnabon for a new Footlong Churro for $2 (which could ease the pain caused by Costco's decision to drop churros from its menu). There will be an Auntie Anne's footlong pretzel for $3, served with a side of mustard (another favorite Costco dropped long ago).

The company is also bringing back its Footlong Cookie, which is a chocolate chip creation that was a special item for National Cookie Day for the past couple of years. That will cost $5.

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Gallery Credit: Jesse James

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