Drive-Thru Innovation in the GCC

December 13, 2020 by Amyaal Contributor


Drive-through are pretty neat. The idea of getting food or drink in your own car has been around for a long time, but the concept has continually evolved to the point where we are now seeing some truly unique concepts.  In the past, we saw innovations such as Starbuck’s introducing a deaf-friendly drive-through, so we were interested to see what unique experiences have been developed in the GCC.  We have had a look around and found five of the best to show you!


5: Salt Bay: The World’s first floating drive-through

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

It can never be said that Dubai does not have some amazing concepts floating around – literally in this case. Technically it might be more of a drive-up, but when something is this unique, it would be remiss to leave it off the list! Serving a selection of burgers, Salt Bay operates around the Dubai Marina, and even meets environmental standards, running completely on electricity!

4: Al-Futtaim ACE: Digital drive-through

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

A bit different from the classic drive-through, the ACE store at Dubai Festival City has now implemented a digital drive through, allowing you to buy from over 15,000 items and pick them up the next day. Pre-booking your slot allows you to drive through and pick up anything from a barbecue to a vacuum cleaner, all from the comfort of your own car.  You can acess their website and thorough line of DYI and Home products at

3: McDonald’s VIP drive-through Club

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

The idea of a McDonald/s drive-through is hardly revolutionary, but by introducing its VIP club in the legendary burger chains KSA stores, McDonald’s has changed the way they can interact with customers by adding another level of engagement. Registering through the app allows customers to earn reward points – so far so simple – but where McDonald’s differs is that they constantly analyze what you are buying in order to give you a curated list of favorites to spend your points on.  You will be given a VIP sticker to stick on your windshield to identify your status – but we all like being VIPs!  For more information, you can visit

2: Oman Drive-In Cinema

Muscat, Oman

Even with the major efforts to relaunch the cinema experience, current social distancing and pandemic-dealing hygiene put some restrictions on the traditional film going experience.  Oman, however, has gone back to a classic idea by introducing their first drive-in cinema. Based in Muscat, the cinema includes food and drink, and even a free car wash as part of the experience.  With a screen the size of a five-story building, you will be able to see clearly wherever you park!  VOX has also launched a similar service in Dubai, VOX drive-in cinema, located in Mall of the Emirates.


1: Drive n’ Dine

Manama, Bahrain

A drive-through restaurant is great, but what about an entire drive-through carnival? With food, drinks and even a drive-through shooting range and market, Drive n’ Dine, opposite the Bahrain International Circuit, is a new way of looking at in-car entertainment. Live Music, food trucks and a huge amount of carnival games can be played from the comfort of your own car. Running until the 26th December, and with full Covid-19 safety in place.  Time is limited to take advantage of this opportunity! For more information, you can visit


We will stay on the look-out for brands pushing the innovative boundaries of the drive-through experience.  We encourage you to join the Community Forum discussions and share your favorite experiences!





Main Image provided by Shutterstock

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