Industry News | April 2, 2001

Burger King Offers "Stress Free" Drive-Thru

Sixty-one metro area Orlando Burger King restaurants have added new and improved drive-thru components aimed to ease customer stress. This unique bundling of eight components, named Drive Thru 2000, is part of Burger King Corporation's larger transformation efforts meant to enhance the entire customer experience at Burger King restaurants based on consumer feedback.

"Since drive-thru comprises more than 50% of our business, it's essential that we create ways to provide great service in every part of restaurant operations,'' said Jeff Bonasia, director of marketing for Transformation, Burger King Corporation. "Studies show that the drive-thru can be a stressful experience for customers, and we've taken several steps to alleviate that stress and make the drive-thru experience more pleasant and efficient for our customers.''

The new elements of the drive-thru now available in participating Orlando Burger King restaurants are: daypart specific preview menu board; daypart specific menu board; improved speaker and microphone for better audio reception; order confirmation units with LCD displays; price confirmation display; credit and debit card readers; value meal trays and clear view bags.

The preview board allows customers time to "preview" or study menu options before driving to the order station which reduces order time and anxiety about being hurried at the menu board. The daypart specific menu board, which for example displays breakfast items until 10:30 a.m., reduces the clutter of menu options and shows larger food pictures, making the board easier to read.

The sound system has been enhanced for improved voice transmission and reception. Once the order is taken, an order confirmation unit displays the items in the customer's order, along with the price so that order accuracy is improved.

The price confirmation unit at the pay window displays the amount owed, which speeds up the transaction time and reduces the customer's stress during the payment process. Payment options also become more convenient with a credit or debit card reader. Cards are swiped through the card reader inside the restaurant, and if the customer selects the debit option, he or she is presented with a keypad to enter the personal identification code for payment. A complimentary traveling value meal tray was developed for use in the customer's vehicle. Clear view bags allow the customer to ensure that the order is correct before driving away.

"We listened to what our customers told us they were looking for at the drive-thru and bundled these elements together into Drive-Thru 2000,'' said Bonasia. The improved drive-thru is part of a massive restaurant transformation initiative currently underway in U.S. Burger King restaurants.

See how Burger King and other chains performed in last year's QSR Drive Thru Time Study .