McDonald’s takes pictures of drive-thru customers for handy reason

McDonald’s drive-thrus remain open much later than some of the restaurants, making them a firm favourite for people on the go or seeking a late-night meal. And while customers have very little interaction with the staff working inside, an employee has revealed that they know exactly who’s who from a single photograph taken in the queue. But it’s not just for security reasons.

Taking to her TikTok account to share the secret, McDonald’s employee Emerald Cooper ( explained that the fast-food restaurant has cameras installed around the drive-thru.

When customers arrive in their vehicles to make an order, a photograph of their car is taken to help staff keep track of multiple orders.

While it also provides an element of security for the staff, the restaurant worker revealed that it also makes their job easier during busy periods.

In the video, she revealed exactly what McDonald’s drive-thru employees see from inside the restaurant.

Showing a snapshot of a camera monitor, Emerald wrote: “For those wondering how we don’t get confused taking your order we take a picture of your car.”

On the screen, the camera shows a side view of the driver and the car.

According to other McDonald’s workers who share the same trade secret on TikTok, the camera takes a snapshot of the car after the order is placed.

This links the vehicle to the ordered items so it’s easy for staff to find the correct customer.

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Those hoping to hide away in their car while visiting the drive-thru may be disappointed to know that they are easier to see in the image than they may think.

In another video, a fellow employee Kate Clarke @katieeclarke joked: “So maybe don’t pick your nose when you order… because we see it and we judge you.”

But while some TikTok users were wowed by the revelation, others shared that they don’t think it works.

One person commented on Emerald’s video: “And yet my order is always wrong.”

Another added: “I went to my local McDonald’s and they still managed to give me someone else’s order and they gave my order to someone else.”

A second revelation by other people who work for the fast-food chain detailed how easy it is for workers to hear customers as well as see them.

One person took to social media to say: “I’m waiting for the day they realise we hear them the moment they pull up, to the moment they leave the speaker box.”

According to the employee, staff can tune into vehicles from the moment they pull up when their headsets are triggered to turn on via a sensor.

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