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hen Submarina founders Les Warfield and Ron Vickers moved to San Diego in 1976, one of the first things they did was try to find a sub-sandwich shop. The sunny days in San Diego were enough to lure the two U.S. Postal Service workers from Reno, Nevada, however it wasn't long before they missed one of their favorite work-day lunch stops. As their sandwich search continued in San Diego without success, they started talking about opening their own shop. How hard could it be? As Warfield said, "We had no experience, no capital and by every rule of business we should have failed. We didn't know an avocado from prosciutto, but we were willing to learn." Their first lesson was in how to design a building. "We walked around on the site before the construction started and tried to imagine counters and tables - figuring out where to put things," said Warfield. "Of course, we have since learned, the neighboring city of Poway, is a very difficult place to start a new business. What saved us was a good product and the established reputation for great food and service," said Warfield. Vickers agreed. "You can put a McDonald's anywhere. The secret of our success is a quality product." The first shop opened in 1977 and a second followed, in Escondido (California), in 1979. The stores were operated, for several years, by wives Maureen Vickers and Lynn Warfield, with Ron and Les contributing after hours, when available. Like any family-operated business, there were sacrifices of time, vacations, weekends and evenings, all devoted to Submarina. It wasn't until the mid-1980’s that the mail carriers were able to hang up their mail bags and get behind the counter full-time. Submarina secured its place by producing hearty sandwiches made from quality ingredients. Today the generous helpings of meat and cheese are still sliced in front of the customer, ensuring freshness. All breads are still made from scratch by a baker and delivered to the stores fresh.

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About Submarina

hen Submarina founders Les Warfield and Ron Vickers moved to San Diego in 1976, one of the first things they did was try to find a sub-sandwich shop. The sunny days in San Diego were enough to lure the two U.S. Postal Service workers from Reno, Nevada, however it wasn't long before they missed one of their favorite work-day lunch stops. As their sandwich search continued in San Diego without success, they started talking about opening their own shop. How hard could it be?

As Warfield said, "We had no experience, no capital and by every rule of business we should have failed. We didn't know an avocado from prosciutto, but we were willing to learn."
Their first lesson was in how to design a building. "We walked around on the site before the construction started and tried to imagine counters and tables - figuring out where to put things," said Warfield.

"Of course, we have since learned, the neighboring city of Poway, is a very difficult place to start a new business. What saved us was a good product and the established reputation for great food and service," said Warfield.
Vickers agreed. "You can put a McDonald's anywhere. The secret of our success is a quality product."

The first shop opened in 1977 and a second followed, in Escondido (California), in 1979.

The stores were operated, for several years, by wives Maureen Vickers and Lynn Warfield, with Ron and Les contributing after hours, when available. Like any family-operated business, there were sacrifices of time, vacations, weekends and evenings, all devoted to Submarina. It wasn't until the mid-1980’s that the mail carriers were able to hang up their mail bags and get behind the counter full-time.

Submarina secured its place by producing hearty sandwiches made from quality ingredients. Today the generous helpings of meat and cheese are still sliced in front of the customer, ensuring freshness. All breads are still made from scratch by a baker and delivered to the stores fresh.