100 years of drive-in (and 25 since the first McDrive in Italy)

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By now in the car many things are done that otherwise, due to the risk of infection, it would not be possible to do: this is the beauty of drive-in, a symbol of 50s pop culture that is back in fashion, and not just for open-air cinemas. We rediscovered it out of necessity, with swab stations for Covid-19 (soon also for vaccinations) and it proved to be a perfect formula also for big events.

Some rallies by Joe Biden, for example, you are kept in drive-in mode, a Treviso (replicating a German experiment) a couple in this way arranged a whole wedding: refreshments for 130 guests comfortably seated in their 56 cars where they were served by 26 waiters.

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A Colonia, also in drive-in mode, citizens celebrated Carnival singing, dancing, complete with masks (as well as masks). As well as in Buddusò (Sassari), where the Municipality has also distributed the traditional pancakes.

All this happens to 100 years since the birth of the first drive in in the world – it was 1921 when, in Dallas, he opened the first restaurant that served the car Kirby’s Pig Stand – and simultaneously 25 years after the opening of the first all-Italian McDonald’s McDrive: he Mc Donalds’ Roma Magliana. It was the first of 389 McDonald’s restaurants equipped with McDrive in 325 towns and cities of Italy, some of which are spectacular, such as the McDonald’s Marino on the Appia Antica (Frattocchie, Rome), which is the first museum restaurant in the world with a transparent floor that allows you to see the ancient ruins of the road below, or the McDonald’s Cagliari Poetto overlooking the beach on one side and the flamingo reserve on the other.

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In 2020, McDrives have almost served 34 million cars in our country: a real surge compared to 2019, given that orders have gone from 28% in 2019 to 41% in 2020. McDonald’s in Villaricca (Naples): in January 2021, Villaricca served 19.600 auto, that is 630 cars a day which is more than double the national average.

The reasons for the success are many and intuitive: we have made a virtue of necessity, rediscovering this formula fast, very comfortable, safe (the McDrive system recognizes the arrival of a car and it is also possible to order by voice command and pay by card) which also gives a little the idea of ​​having lunch or dinner out because, instead of waiting to take them home, the sandwich or chips are often eaten directly in the car. A real ritual at night, when finding an open place for a snack is a challenge. In fact, at night, more than a maxi menu, at McDrive you order euro-saving menus such as small fries, ice cream cones, the cheeseburger, the classic hamburger.

There are even those who have thought of more creative ways to take advantage of McDrive. In January 2018, two girls arrived on horseback at McDrive at Mc Donald’s in Borgomanero (Novara). They ate the hamburger while remaining in the saddle. In the gallery above some images of the McDrive

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