LONDON - McDonald€™s is looking to overhaul its customer ordering system in Europe, partly replacing cashiers and the use of banknotes at its 7,000 European restaurants with touchscreen terminals and swipe cards, the Financial Times reports.
"Ordering food has not changed for 30 or 40 years," said Steve Easterbrook, president of McDonald€™s Europe.
The move is part of the company€™s strategy at wooing cash-strapped customers with added convenience, which also includes renovating stores, changing menus and extending opening hours.
Sales for McDonald€™s in Europe rose 5.7 percent year-on-year in the first quarter, the highest growth out of its three main geographic regions.
Easterbrook said the changes would improve efficiency, trimming each transaction by three or four seconds, a significant cumulative time savings for the two million customers who visit a European McDonald€™s each day.
Easterbrook said the new technology would also allow McDonald€™s to gather more information about customers€™ ordering habits, similar to how supermarkets have tracked their customer data from loyalty card usage.
Diners at the 1,200 McDonald€™s restaurants in the U.K. will soon be able to pay by swiping a Visa debit card, similar to how London€™s mass transit commuters can swipe their Oyster cards at train stations.