Convenience is the name of the game when it comes to fast food. Have you ever hopped into the drive-through lane of your favorite chain expecting fast service, only to find yourself waiting for longer than you had had you gone inside? Been there, done that. Along with the rise in the quality of food being offered at fast food chains, brands are starting to take notice of customers’ higher demands for convenience, especially when it comes to drive-through service time. Because of this, several studies have been done evaluating the performance of popular drive-throughs. Below are the top 10 fastest drive-through restaurants in America according to a Drive-Thru Performance Study. We’ve included the average wait time in seconds for each line.
Average time: 168.23 seconds
Raising Cane’s is another fast food joint that is up to par with Burger King on is drive-through times, making it one of the fastest drive-though restaurants in the nation. Many claim their minimalist menu helps keep drive-through times down, as ordering is less complicated.
See Raising Cane’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
Average time: 173.85 seconds
Dunkin’ Donuts focuses on employee training to make sure that no matter how complicated the menu item, speed is still of the utmost importance.
See Dunkin Donuts’ menu before your next drive-through visit.
3. Burger King
Average time: 189.78 seconds
Burger King is actually considered the fastest drive-through in America, beating other chains by several seconds of waiting time. This is thanks to the latest technologies like digital menu boards and optimized employee workflow over the years.
See Burger King’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
4. Tim Horton’s
Average time: 202.66 seconds
Tim Horton’s is one of the newer kids on the block when it comes to the fastest drive-throughs in America, but analysts mention they’re on the rise when it comes to optimizing digital ordering. Their appearance on this list suggests they’re not doing too shabby.
As you can see, the best and fastest drive-throughs in the nation will only keep you waiting between two and three minutes in line – a timetable that can’t be beaten!
See Tim Horton’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
5. Taco Bell
Average time: 212.71 seconds
Taco Bell mentions that it uses “standardized design” in all of its drive-through designs and systems that “lends itself to speed and consistency no matter which restaurant you’re visiting.” They focus on tracking performance metrics with the latest technologies as well, which keeps a tab on how efficiently things are moving (or not moving) in the drive-through.
See Taco Bell’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
Average time: 230.98 seconds
KFC doesn’t disclose how it manages to keep its drive-through times speedy, but we can only assume they’ve been in the business long enough to know how to train employees to value speed and efficiency while optimizing the latest digital ordering technologies.
See KFC’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
Average time: 239.03 seconds
McDonald’s continues to up its digital drive-through ordering game, which according to the vice president of global operations Jim Fox, improves speed and order capacity to enhance the fastest drive-through experience.
See McDonald’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
Average time: 244 seconds
John Bowie, COO of Arby’s mentions that the success of Arby’s as one of the fastest drive-throughs lies in its “Fast Crafted” position, which is founded on the idea that, “A great sandwich, a big smile, and getting all the right things in the bag doesn’t slow you down.” Arby’s also embraces technologies that make their drive-through system more efficient and is constantly willing to evolve these as new technology emerges.
See Arby’s menu before your next visit.
Average time: 251.04 seconds
Chick-Fil-A has preparation to thank for being one of the fastest drive-through restaurants processes. Apparently, they test out store drive-through designs with real vehicle mockups to test the process for optimal speediness, before launching the store.
See Chick-Fil-A’s menu before your next drive-through visit.
10. Carl’s Junior
Average time: 270.22 seconds
Carl’s Junior’s philosophy to keep drive-through wait times down is to reduce what they call “reaction time,” or the time between the moment the customer makes their order and their employees start to make it. Carl’s strives for the reaction time to be seconds, or to start making customers’ orders immediately.
See Carl’s Junior menu before your next drive-through visit.
From digital ordering to multiple lane drive-throughs, fast food chains are stepping up their game when it comes to providing a quick customer experience. Check out these surprising drive-through stats before rolling up to get your next Big Mac.