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The One Type of Restaurant Thriving During the Coronavirus

Most eateries have been hit very hard by stay-at-home orders, except this old-school outlet.
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While the coronavirus lockdown has been a disaster for the vast majority of restaurants, this old school type of eatery has thrived: Drive-in restaurants.

A drive-in restaurant is one where one can literally drive-in with their car for service. Patrons park their vehicles and are usually served by staff who walk out to take orders and return with food, encouraging diners to remain parked while they eat. As diners look to social distance while eating out, drive-in restaurants have seen a surge in business as patrons can order and eat food from the relative safety of their own car.

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Restaurants that have enjoyed an increase in business during the coronavirus pandemic are far and way the outlier, as the vast majority of independently own and nationally franchise restaurant chains have seen revenues drop precipitously due to the nearly nationwide lockdown. In fact, only four chains recorded any sort of profit in the first quarter of 2020, which only went up to the end of March.

Summer is usually the busiest time of the year for most drive-ins, but the challenges of eating out have seen business booming this spring. Take for example Dave Bennyhoff, owner of Minnetonka Drive In in Spring Lake, Minnesota, who told local news outlet Fox9 "People need a break. They don't want to cook at home, they want to eat out, even if they are only coming here and eating in their car. It still feels like they are going out to eat."

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Bennyhoff also revealed that since customers can order and pay online and stay in their cars while a carhop brings them their food without having contact with anyone, " is an ideal pit-stop for people who want to go out to eat during the stay at home order."

Of course, it's not just drive IN restaurants that are thriving. Those that have a drive THRU lane are also seeing crucial business in dire times. So much so that many traditional dining outlets are adding drive-through, or curbside pick up options, , to keep businesses afloat and their patrons well fed. Here are 100 worst foods you should avoid though if you're feeling sick.

Eat This, Not That! is constantly monitoring the latest food news as it relates to COVID-19 in order to keep you healthy, safe, and informed (and answer your most urgent questions). Here are the precautions you should be taking at the grocery store, the foods you should have on hand, the meal delivery services and restaurant chains offering takeout you need to know about, and ways you can help support those in need. We will continue to update these as new information develops. Click here for all of our COVID-19 coverage, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date.

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