Serving billions and billions: In less than 3 minutes

At a McDonald's Drive-Through in Portland, Oregon, the Angus burgers have already been discontinued, though they're still available at other McDonald's in the city. The company has also discontinued the fruit and walnut salad and chicken selects, while adding a new egg-whites McMuffin.

This final note today, in which the phrase time is money, is established once again as a truism.

From the 2013 Drive-Thru Performance Study, by the fast-food trade publication QSR Magazine: Last year, the average McDonald's drive-through customer waited 189.5 seconds for her order. That's a tad more than three minutes.

It matters, because the big chains do 60-70 percent of their business at the drive-through window.

The record? Wendy's...back in 2003. 116 seconds, or less than two minutes.

Nobody's been close since.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, public radio’s program on business and the economy.

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