SANTA ANA, Calif. (Reuters) - Fast food is about to get faster
in southern California, where the car is king,
hamburgers are considered heavenly, and speed is of the essence.
Five McDonald's restaurants have signed a deal with a local transportation
authority to allow motorists to zip through
the drive-through line without having to stop and pay for their food -- cutting 15 seconds off the normal 131
The trick is utilizing the same technology that permits motorists
to skip stops on Orange County toll roads. A
transponder on some cars emits a signal to antennae on the toll roads, automatically calculating the fee. The motorist
is then billed.
Now five McDonald's restaurants in Orange County are installing
similar antennae to interact with cars equipped
with transponders. Customers using the faster service will be automatically billed for their food when they receive
their statement from the same agency that oversees the toll road accounts.
Antonio Hernandez, a spokesman for McDonald's, told the Orange
County Register the company believes the
time-saving plan, which goes into effect in March, will be a big hit.
``With today's lifestyles, everyone's on the go. If they can omit
any time having to wait in the drive-through line, they
would welcome that,'' said Hernandez.
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