Drive Thru Ordering Systems
Running an efficient drive-thru can be challenging without the proper POS system at your disposal. And determining what to look for in a streamlined POS system can be even more difficult.
Luckily, you've come to the right place.
Today, we're going to dive in and explore the ins and outs of the 5 best drive-thru POS systems on the market, providing you with a better idea of what can help optimize your operation.
Continue reading to learn more.
Drive Thru Ordering Systems
- Best Overall
- Quick-service mode
- $59 per month starting
- Best for multi-location businesses
- Dedicated drive-thru mode
- $178 per month starting
- Best for digital ordering
- Toast Takeout App
- $69 per month starting
- Best for franchises
- Contactless payment support
- Upfront cost of anywhere from $3,000 to $6,000
The 5 Best Drive Thru Ordering Systems
Upserve POS was made by the popular point-of-sale developer, Lightspeed. The great thing about Upserve POS is that it was made specifically for restaurants, providing all of the features you'll need to run your food service business with efficiency.
In fact, Upserve was developed by former restaurant employees, who designed it to be as user-friendly as possible. The system is highly mobile and allows for plenty of unique third-party integrations.
Upserve can also be used in multi-location businesses, thanks to the Upserve Live tool. With Upserve Live, you can monitor each one of your store locations to get a quick overview of performance at each.
Drive-thru managers can track customer purchases, see which items are selling best, and keep overall tabs on drive-thru window sales.
Thanks to Upserve's intuitive interface and Quick-Serve mode, your employees will essentially be walked through fast-paced orders, limiting the number of human errors that could cost you big time. This aspect is the main reason that we've deemed it the best POS system for drive-thrus.
We also love the included heat map on Upserve's interface, which displays a clear view of which times of day are busiest. This feature can even use data to pinpoint your most capable employees, allowing you to put them on duty during these busy shifts.
For core Upserve features, you'll pay $59 per month. However, if you want to upgrade your drive-thru point-of-sale system with a few more in-depth features, such as customer management, loyalty programs, recipe costing, low inventory alerts, and menu optimization, you'll need to upgrade to the $199 per month plan.
Note that third-party payment processors cannot be integrated, meaning you're stuck with Upserve's in-house payment processing system, Upserve Payments. While this isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's something to be mindful of if you already have a payment processing company that you like.
$129 to $1,350 depending on the elements you choose
$59 per month
Non-disclosed flat-rate fee
Revel is one of the best iPad POS systems in the industry, highly-rated for its versatile feature set and sleek, modern interface.
It's a top-notch quickservice POS solution, whether you run a multi-location business or a single-location restaurant with a self-service kiosk.
One of the most convenient drive-thru features found on Revel's restaurant POS is the customer-facing display. It cuts down on potential mistakes in the drive-thru lane and streamlines the overall operation, as your customers will be able to see each item they've ordered as they are entered into the system.
The employee management features are just as robust, giving managers the ability to organize and automate payroll on a single platform, meaning less confusion for you and your employees.
Plus, with unlimited user capabilities, every employee can have their own separate account.
If you ever suffer from internet issues, you'll be happy knowing that the "Always On" mode has got your back. This functional solution keeps your business running during internet outages.
Of course, we can't go without mentioning the inventory management features, which track inventory in real-time and alert you when stock is low. You can always make sure you have enough of each of your ingredients in-house.
Revel's restaurant POS costs $99 per month when billed annually. The downside is that you have to sign a three-year contract with Revel's in-house payment processor, Revel Advantage. While Revel allows customers to sign up for third-party merchant accounts, it can get pretty expensive pretty quickly.
Our Revel POS System Reviews goes into even more detail.
$99 per month
2.49% + $0.15 per in-person transaction
NCR Silver is a cloud-based drive-thru ordering system produced by the software giant NCR. This POS system is great for mid-sized establishments, and it comes with a top-notch payment processing system.
The best aspect is that it comes with a dedicated drive-thru mode, a godsend for restaurants looking for a reliable quick-service POS.
Other noteworthy features found inside this restaurant POS include the reporting suite, the inventory management system, mobile ordering, offline mode, and the built-in loyalty program.
You can customize NCR Silver's software however you'd like, and it can be purchased through a number of merchant providers. It's crucial that you purchase your drive-thru ordering system from the right merchant provider, as the quality of the provider can dictate your experience.
When you buy from NCR, the Silver "Restaurant Pro" plan costs $178 per month, which may be a bit costly for smaller restaurants. You'll have to sign a two-year contract with NCR directly, which provides you with all of the hardware and software features you could need for your drive-thru.
Note that you may be able to get a better deal on this restaurant POS if you purchase it through another provider. Many business owners have been able to lock in a NCR Silver deal for around $149 per month.
Visit NCR Silver POS to learn more.
Included in software lease
$178 per month starting
2.25% + $0.15 per in-person transaction
Toast is an Android-based POS and one of the top enterprise POS systems on the market today, using customer-facing displays and quick digital payments for the fastest drive-thru line experience ever.
This highly mobile POS solution was made to be accessible and intuitive, perfect for businesses with high employee turnover. One of the highlights is the reporting suite, which provides owners and managers with a wealth of data and information, including everything from real-time sales to employee tips.
Customers enjoy the user-friendliness of this system as well, as it gives the option to access loyalty points through the popular Toast loyalty program.
These points can be used with the Toast online ordering system, allowing drive-thru customers to make orders ahead of time and pick them up at the window without hassle.
To make things even easier, customers can use the Toast Takeout App to place orders for contactless pickup or delivery.
If you run a multi-location establishment, you'll be happy to know that you can access data from all locations using a single device. You can even perform complex operations, such as price switching, from your mobile device. It's one of the most customizable POS systems for drive-thrus around.
While you can start with the $0 per month starter plan, it won't have all of the features you'll likely need to run an efficient drive-thru line. For this reason, we recommend starting with the $69 per month plan, which is great for mid-sized establishments. Note that your monthly fee could be higher depending on the number of registers you use and whether or not you opt for certain add-ons, such as the Toast payroll system or kitchen display system.
Toast also has its customers sign a two-year minimum contract. Breaking this contract before the end of the term comes with a hefty termination fee, which is why we recommend taking this system for a test drive before making a commitment.
For a more in-depth analysis, head over to Toast POS Reviews.
$0 to $799
$69 per month
2.99% + $0.15 per in-person transaction
HungerRush came about back in 2003, taking the fast-food industry by storm. It quickly became one of the most popular POS systems for drive-thru restaurants. While one look at the current interface might make you squint at its outdated design, there are many modern features that make this a strong and capable system.
It has both Android and iOS support, allowing you to use tablets in your drive-thrus. You'll also find a range of cloud-based features, including contactless payment support, online ordering, and cloud reporting.
HungerRush is the chosen drive-thru POS system for several franchises, including Popeye's Chicken and Hungry Howie's, displaying plenty of credibility. It's one of the most functional and reliable enterprise systems on this list.
One of the great aspects about HungerRush is that it is perfectly scalable and great for small or mid-sized establishments that have plans to grow in the future. Whether you run a single-location drive-thru or multi-location drive-thrus, you'll have all of the suitable features needed for total efficiency.
Notable features found in the HungerRush POS system include offline mode, digital menu board/signage, and employee management. HungerRush also has some of the best customer service in the business.
One main downside to HungerRush is that you have to pay an upfront fee for the POS software, which is quite unusual in the world of cloud-based POS system solutions. The upfront fee exceeds than what typical drive-thru ordering systems cost.
You must also sign a three-year payment processing contract with WorldPay.
We recommend testing out the system via the free version of HungerRush to make sure you like its tools and features before making any long-term commitments.
$3,000 to $6,000 per station
Included in hardware price
The Bottom Line - Finding The Best Drive-Thru POS Solution For Your Needs
While some drive-thru restaurant establishments are able to function with the most basic point-of-sale system features, these elementary solutions don't work for all businesses.
The last thing you want is for your employees to be struggling with a confusing or clunky system when the drive-thru line gets backed up, as this will increase wait times and cost you money in the end.
Instead, you need a functional drive-thru POS solution that has an easy to use user interface, order tracking, and customer management features to optimize the ordering process. You may even consider additional features, such as digital menu board integration, kitchen display system integration, and order pickup.
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