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Does Subway Drug Test Their Staff and Applicants?

Arguably the most successful submarine sandwich chain in the USA and worldwide, Subway has tens of thousands of outlets available.

With its astounding number of stores, it offers tons of job opportunities for those seeking entry-level roles.

Given the numbers mentioned, it is fair to ask, “Does Subway drug test their employees or not?”

That’s because a company that has a scale of operations similar to Subway might find it challenging.

To properly address the question and other related inquiries, let’s explore what you need to know about the sandwich chain giant.

Subway Company Background and History

Given the visibility of this submarine sandwich company, it wouldn’t be strange to conclude that Subway is one of the most distinct and profitable fast-food chains in the world today. The business benefited from its core values and principles, established several decades ago.

Subway’s foundation is as solid as it gets, with values revolving around family, teamwork, and opportunity. However, values alone wouldn’t be the only factor in the company’s rise to dominance.

Dr. Peter Buck, a person who has a Ph.D. in physics, helped Fred DeLuca, a 17-year old college student. Buck influenced DeLuca to build a submarine sandwich business to pay for his education.

With the help of Buck’s $1000 investment, a business partnership was formed. It later resulted in revolutionizing the fast-food sector.

In 1965 at Bridgeport, Connecticut, the partners launched their first restaurant. They served fresh, inexpensive, made-to-order submarine sandwiches. The food store was initially called “Pete’s Super Submarines.”

After gaining some success, the partners opened a branch of their restaurant. It was during the opening of the new store that the name changed to Subway.

The sandwiches’ and the brand’s popularity grew steadily over the years. By 1982, the company marketed itself by proclaiming that Subway is the biggest “sub chain” in the USA and never looked back. As of this time, it remains the world’s most prolific submarine chain, with over 40,000 outlets scattered worldwide.

According to Entrepreneur.com, Subway makes around 5,300 every minute, translating to 7.6 million subs each day. Judging by these figures, it’s fair to conclude that the submarine sandwich business is running smoothly.

Careers at Subway

If you are drawn to applying for a position at Subway, below are the usual roles that most outlets are looking for most of the time.

Sandwich Artist

In regards to day-to-day operations, a Sandwich Artist is the most vital position at Subway outlets. The role usually revolves around serving guests, preparing sandwiches, ensuring food safety and sanitation, and various paperwork duties.

Since the Sandwich Artist is the primary employee who interacts with customers, the position requires someone to be as benevolent and cordial as possible. Here are some notable tasks that you need to expect if you’re interested in becoming a Sandwich Artist.

  • Shows expertise and knowledge of menu items and explains the pertinent details to customers.
  • Prepares the customers’ orders correctly and on schedule.
  • Monitors and replenishes items in the sandwich unit area to maintain an adequate supply during operations.
  • Attending to the customers, taking their orders by using the cash register or POS, receiving payment, and returning change when applicable.
does subway drug test applicants


This role is pretty much self-explanatory, but just in case you’re not familiar, a store manager oversees and manages the overall operations of a Subway outlet. Listed below are some of the most critical responsibilities of a Subway Manager:

  • Manages the schedule of the staff, from shifts to rest days.
  • Makes sure the store strictly adheres to all local and national health and food safety regulations. Subway’s safety and security policy must also be implemented at all times.
  • Must properly communicate changes in menu items, food preparation formulas, and other practices to Sandwich Artists as soon as possible.
  • As needed, recruits, rewards, and fires employees.

Assistant Manager

Like other establishments, a Subway assistant manager or shift manager shares some responsibilities with the manager, such as enforcing food safety, cleanliness, inventory monitoring, and staff scheduling. Usual tasks involve:

  • Completes University of Subway courses on time as given.
  • Performs numerous administrative responsibilities such as taking inventory and aiding the manager with product orders.
  • Assigns and evaluates the quality of work of employees.

Does Subway Drug Test?

Different individuals own many Subway outlets, so hiring policies may differ from one store to another. Based on the information shared by former and existing Subway employees, it’s safe to assume that drug testing is not mandatory for all stores.

If you’re a sandwich artist or in other entry-level roles, chances are you might not be required to have a drug test. Managers, on the other hand, might be subjected to a substance test.

Why Subway Stores and Other Businesses Do Not Require Drug Testing

Given the benefits of conducting drug tests on new hires and tenured workers, you may wonder why many Subway stores and other establishments skip this procedure. The number of businesses that chose not to do drug tests on their staff steadily increases.

In 2019, Arlington had the highest jobs requiring pre-employment drug tests. Out of 14,597 jobs there, only 6.79% require a substance screening test as part of the hiring process. The lowest percentage recorded is in New York, with only 0.46% of jobs that require drug tests for new hires.

You may think that the New York number is surprising, but Omaha, NE, had literally zero jobs that mandate drug screening for successful candidates. Considering these figures, it’s not a mystery that Subway and other businesses are following the trend.

There are two compelling reasons these companies are willing to take their chances rather than implementing drug tests. The first reason, as you may have deciphered, is due to economic reasons.

No law in the USA strictly enforces that all new hires get subjected to drug tests. Since test kits, laboratory, and medical personnel cost money, companies are more inclined to save some money rather than spend it on a test that may not help them in the long run.

The second reason is the high number of applicants using prohibited substances. Upon checking numerous online postings, it appears that a large number of entry-level workers are actively using marijuana and other drugs before and after their shifts.

They claim that if drug tests are mandatory for all new hires, there will be a shortage of employees, without a doubt. While there isn’t much data to solidify this reason, it would be unwise to ignore this issue.

Final Thoughts

To answer the question “Does Subway drug test their employees?,” the short answer is not necessarily. However, this notion should not encourage you to try or continue using illegal substances. Applying for a job at Subway or not, ensure that you have a clean body and mind.

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