- Chick-fil-A will add Mobile Thru order pickup lanes to over 300 restaurants nationwide by the end of the year following a test of the mobile order pickup lane, the company said Tuesday.
- The chain piloted the express drive-thru lane in about 60 restaurants last year and found that 85% of customers using the lane would likely use it again and 90% said the process went smoothly.
- Chick-fil-A has been working on ways to reduce service times, including a geofencing feature that alerts employees that a customer is near so workers can prepare orders. The feature provides customers with an estimated time of completion.
Chick-fil-A, which expects to add more Mobile Thrus to restaurants into next year, said the move could help improve drive-thru service times. Chick-fil-A had the highest number of cars in its drive-thru of the top U.S. fast food chains with an average of 4.74 cars, which contributed to Chick-fil-A’s wait times, according to a 2022 report from Intouch Insight. Chick-fil-A’s speed of service times top eight minutes and are the longest among the fast food chains measured.
“We want our customers to be in control of their experience,” said Julie Ledford, the principal program lead on Chick-fil-A’s Service and Hospitality team. “The Mobile Thru lane will give our guests access to greater speed in the drive-thru, cutting down on ordering and payment time significantly.
Customers pick their restaurant location and select “Mobile Thru,” if available, as their pickup destination when they place an online order, the company said. Upon arrival, the customer scans a QR code in the express lane and then pulls around the restaurant to receive their order.
Chick-fil-A’s elevated drive-thru in Atlanta, which is expected to open next year, will include the Mobile Thru lanes. This design, which has four lanes, offers both Mobile Thru and traditional drive-thru lanes that can hold up to 75 cars.
Mobile pickup lanes have proven to bolster average unit volumes, especially at chains like Chipotle and Cava. Transactions at a Chipotlane also take less than 30 seconds, and Taco Bell said its latest Go Mobile model, which is designed for digital and third-party orders and contains no dining room, reduces delivery wait time and drive-thru times for late night customers.