Starbucks Coffee Korea benefits big from drive-thru amid virus outbreak

2020.12.10 12:58:07 | 2020.12.10 15:01:43

[Photo provided by Startbucks Coffee Korea Co.]이미지 확대

[Photo provided by Startbucks Coffee Korea Co.]

Drive-thru service has worked out well for Starbucks Coffee Korea Co., the No. 1 coffeehouse chain in South Korea, as it helped to offset business shutdowns during outbreaks.

The local operator of the global coffee chain brand said Wednesday that the number of Starbucks customers registered to its My DT Pass membership made another milestone of 1.5 million after breaking 1 million just about eight months ago. The special membership program launched in June 2018 allows customers to place an order and pay via Starbucks app for curbside pickup. The drive-thru program has been upgraded for an even simpler pickup service with a system that automatically recognizes a customer’s car license plate.

Takeout orders made via drive-thru branches from January to November this year jumped 46 percent compared to the same period last year. Of them, four out of 10 customers were My DT Pass users this year, up 53 percent on year.

Starbucks introduced drive-thru service in Korea in 2012 and now runs total of 280 outlets, making up 20 percent of its entire 1,480 outlets operating across Korea.

Starbucks Korea also added a virtual order system, which allows customers to talk to Starbucks employees via a screen and make orders. The Korean office was the first among the global coffee giant’s businesses to introduce the service.

By Lee Ho-seung and Cho Jeehyun

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