In-N-Out Burger Diners Warned of Hours-Long Drive-Thru Lines at 1st Idaho Restaurant
- In-N-Out Burger told diners that drive-thru lines at its first Idaho restaurant could reach eight hours, The Idaho Statesman reported.
- Fans camped out overnight in the cold weather for the opening of the buzzy California chain.
- The first customer arrived about 30 hours beforehand, an In-N-Out exec said.
In-N-Out Burger told diners that they could have to wait for up to eight hours to get drive-thru from its first Idaho restaurant as excited fans lined up round the block, local news reported.
The Idaho Statesman reported that a sign at the end of the line at around noon on Tuesday warned customers that they could be waiting for between seven and eight hours to place and collect a drive-thru order at the new Meridian branch of the buzzy California restaurant chain, known for its Double-Double and Animal-Style burgers.
Fans camped out overnight in anticipation of the grand opening, with people dressed in thick coats and woolly hats. The first customer of the day arrived about 30 hours before the restaurant opened, In-N-Out COO Denny Warnick told KTVB – which would suggest they arrived in the very early hours of Monday morning.
A worker from an In-N-Out location in California arrived at 5 a.m. on the opening day to join the line but there were already about 50 cars waiting alongside people “tenting out” near the front door, he told The Statesman.
By the time the restaurant opened at 9. a.m., hundreds of people were already waiting in the drive-thru line, though the line to dine in and collect food for takeout moved much more quickly, The Statesman reported.
A local couple, both 81, came to the opening simply to look at the new restaurant. They told The Statesman that they planned to return another day to actually order food when the “frenzy is over.”
One woman told The State Journal that she joined the line to get a burger for her daughter who had just given birth.
At the launch, the company also had a truck selling Idaho-specific In-N-Out merchandise.
In-N-Out’s Idaho opening marks its 400th restaurant and its eighth state. The chain says the restaurant will employ around 80 staff with a starting wage of $17.50 per hour, well over double the state’s minimum wage. The Meridian branch has one drive-thru lane and indoor seating for 84 guests.
In-N-Out, which this year turned 75, is owned and managed by Lynsi Snyder, the granddaughter of its founders. The chain is known for its Christian values – it prints Bible verses on its packaging – and it doesn’t offer delivery.