Chipotle May Add More Drive-Thru Lanes


As Chipotle Mexican Grill ramps up its digital efforts, the quick-service restaurant chain (QSR) may roll out more drive-thru lanes. Chipotle currently has five locations with drive-thrus in the U.S., but more locations with the feature might be in the works, CNBC reported.

“As we are looking at our real estate pipeline, part of the criteria that has been introduced is to understand how many of those sites might lend themselves to that experience, even if we don’t open them immediately with [the mobile lane] enabled,” Chipotle Chief Digital and Information Officer Curt Garner said.

Here’s how the lanes work: Customers must order ahead through the QSR’s mobile app or an online form. After placing their orders, Chipotle provides customers with a pick-up time. When their orders are ready, customers can simply head to the drive-thru lane instead.

The news comes after Chipotle rolled out a new mobile app in November aimed at enhancing the customer’s dining and online ordering experience.

“Our guests are increasingly mobile and on-the-go, and they want and deserve the same intuitive, accurate and convenient ordering experience they get in our restaurants. That is exactly what our app delivers,” Garner said in an announcement at the time.

The app was geared toward veteran and novice mobile users who were looking to make the most of the on-the-go Chipotle experience through features like quick online reorder of their favorite meals, streamlined payment options and the ability to receive, store and redeem Chipotle retail offers.

Among other new features, the Chipotle app came loaded with the ability to tap into Apple Pay or Android Pay, an easier-to-use store locator and a design that made the app simpler to navigate. The mobile upgrade is one of many enhancements Chipotle had been incubating in 2017. Other additions included “Smarter Pick-Up Times,” which allows customers who order digitally to benefit from shorter and more accurate pick-up times and the ability to reserve a future pick-up time.