One Town in the US Can Get Wendy's by Drone

Pilot program with DoorDash, Wing expected to reach more cities this year
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 22, 2024 11:55 AM CDT

A very different kind of pioneering is happening in Daniel Boone's Virginia hometown. On Thursday, Christiansburg residents became the only people in the US who get Wendy's delivered by drone. In a news release, DoorDash said the delivery pilot program with partner Wing follows a program launched in Australia in 2022 that now has more than 60 participating merchants. DoorDash says people ordering through the app will have the option to choose drone delivery, and eligible customers should be able to get their food in 30 minutes or less. The company plans to offer the service in more US cities later this year, WJW reports.

DoorDash rep Mattie Magdovitz tells the Verge the delivery area includes most homes within 2.5 miles of the Christiansburg Wendy's that's offering the service (there are two). She says delivery sites will need to have a clear area around 6 or 7 feet in diameter, not blocked by "trees, buildings, or any other protrusive object." Magdovitz says that for big orders, up to three drones will be deployed. For anything bigger, a human deliveryperson will be sent.

Wing, part of Alphabet, Google's parent company, also has partnerships with Walgreens and Walmart. It says it has made more than 350,000 drone deliveries in Australia, the US, and Finland. Nation's Restaurant News reports that other US chains experimenting with drone delivery include Chick-fil-A, Little Caesars, and Papa John's. (More drones stories.)

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