McDonald's has long been seen around the world as a cultural ambassador for the US, but it seems the fast food chain is taking on a more formal diplomatic role.
Americans who find themselves in need of consular assistance in Austria will soon be able to turn to Ronald McDonald for help.
The US embassy in Vienna has signed an agreement with McDonald's for staff at its burger restaurants to help American citizens get in touch with officials. A 24-hour "hotline" has been set up to allow McDonald's staff to contact the embassy.
"American citizens traveling in Austria who find themselves in distress and without a way to contact the US Embassy can enter – as of Wednesday, May 15, 2019 – any McDonald's in Austria, and staff will assist them in making contact with the US Embassy for consular services," the embassy said in an announcement on its Facebook page.
A spokesman for the embassy confirmed the arrangement was genuine but declined to comment further.
The initiative is believed to be be the brainchild of Trevor Traina, an entrepreneur who was appointed US ambassador to Austria by Donald Trump last year.
President Trump is known for his love of fast food and served pizza and hamburgers to visitors to the White House in January, when catering staff were off duty because of the US government shutdown.
But the decision to involve McDonald's in consular assistance for Americans abroad met with a mixed response on social media.
"Can I get a vanilla shake with my visa?" joked one Facebook user, while another wrote: "One McPassport to go, please".
"It would be funny if this was a joke," commented a third.
"Our Embassy is fully staffed and ready to assist American citizens in need. This partnership is only one extra way for Americans to connect to the Embassy when they are in an emergency situation," the embassy wrote on Facebook.
"It's making sure American citizens abroad have every option available to get in touch with the Embassy when in need. The #1 duty of every Embassy around the world."
But some were puzzled as to why Americans would struggle to contact the embassy. "Because apparently we are too incompetent to look up the US embassy online?" wrote one.