OnTrend Concepts
Drive-Thru Digest

January 11, 2022

Matt Cook, Editor

If you missed the inaugural issue of the Drive-Thru Digest last week, you can review it online here.


The Drive-Thru Digest is a free weekly newsletter which brings all of the drive-thru related news to your inbox.  Drive-Thru solutions and technology continue to grow and make a huge impact on the restaurant, pharmacy, banking, and grocery industries…so stay ed subscribed and up to speed!


The big news this week is the announcement by Checker’s & Rally’s that they are rolling out AI and robots to take orders at hundreds of their restaurants.  We’ll keep an eye on that as, if successful, it could help with labor, order accuracy, and efficiency issues.


TGI Fridays has also unveiled a smaller footprint concept (Fridays on the Fly) to promote their off-premise business (and it can also handle multiple brands…like a ghost kitchen model).


Feel free to email us (contact@ontrendconcepts.com) with any of your own drive-thru news, white papers, and announcements!  We’d be happy to share them with the industry.


And now, the news…

Drive-Thru Digest – Issue #2

Dining trends to watch in 2022. Could we see more drive-thrus?

As one of the hardest-hit industries during the pandemic, restaurants have had to alter cuisines, styles, service models and more to remain in business. But which changes are here to stay?

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Checkers & Rally's is rolling out voice-ordering bots to take drive-thru orders at 267 restaurants amid a crippling labor shortage in the industry

The restaurant company, known for its double drive-thru lanes, announced plans Monday to launch voice ordering bots at 267 corporate stores in partnership with Presto.

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Will Artificial Intelligence Be Taking Your Next Drive-Thru Order?

Artificial intelligence (AI) may make ordering food through a talking box easier, faster and more accurate.

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How Restaurants Use Location-Based Marketing To Drive Sales

Tight budgets also call for optimizing ad spend. One way to do that is to reach the most high-intent audience. Geotargeting and location-based marketing power these specific audiences for maximum targeted reach.

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The Evolution of the Quick-Service Restaurant Experience

It is an evolutionary tale punctuated and accelerated by the pandemic.

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Restaurant technology trends to define 2022

Over the past couple of years, cloud adoption has brought in a paradigm shift for many industries. The restaurant industry however took its own pace to adapt as it was highly driven by margins, resistance to change, and high Capex.

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TGI Fridays Unveils Small-Format “Fridays on the Fly”

The stores will look to take advantage of a growing off-premise business at the casual-dining brand.

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Cinnabon and Auntie Anne’s Step Out of the Mall Altogether

This comes after the company opened its first ever Auntie Anne’s drive-thru, which was cobranded along with Jamba at a location in Wylie, Tex., last May.

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Long-standing Greensboro Chick-fil-A on Battleground Avenue moves to much larger building with double-wide drive-thru

"Server/ordertaker comfort and meal delivery in all weather conditions led to this design standard," Kiser said in an email to WGHP. He said that drive-thru sales typically make up about "60%-70%" of the business and have grown in the past two years.

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Drive-Thru Real Estate 101: What’s Driving Demand

Accelerating Demand Has Retailers, Restaurants and Investors Queuing Up

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Chatsworth Securities & 5Thru Seek to Digitally Transform the Drive-Thru Payment Experience

The partnership will focus on strategic advisory to help boost 5Thru's market share to digitally transform the drive-thru market.

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Lattes go missing, drive-thrus slow as Omicron hits U.S. restaurants

Service at U.S. restaurants has slowed as Omicron, the latest COVID-19 variant, sickens workers and scares off others, leaving many businesses without enough staff.

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A Drive-Thru Window Saved His Business, but Now He's Being Forced To Shut It Down

Zoning officials concede Robert Balitierrez's drive-thru window isn't causing any problems. But they say it's a code violation and has to close anyway.

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More restaurant employees are quitting than in any other industry, recent data shows

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ November data shows that the quit rate for the foodservice industry has grown from 4.8% to nearly 7% in one year.

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Taco Bell employee fatally shot in Los Angeles drive-thru after refusing a counterfeit bill, police say

Taco Bell employee in Los Angeles was fatally shot Saturday night while working at the drive-thru window after refusing a customer’s counterfeit money, police said.

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Kevin Mitnick on Hacking the Drive-Thru Microphone

Funny story of what he did (as a 16-year old HAM radio operator) at the local McDonald’s drive thru.

Read More


Our newsletters are a collection of all the news from the previous week related to each digest topic.  The focus is on trends, deal announcements, technology, and other industry disruptors and innovations.

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