Love your Zaxby’s and want to enjoy it on the go? Get ready to get those famous Chicken Fingerz™ even faster, as the saucy chicken chain has expanded its to-go-only model with the opening of a brand-new location in Hoover, Alabama. 

Owned and operated by Chicken Scratch Holdings Inc., this new venue on 2071 Patton Chapel Road marks the first time a Zaxby’s franchise has embraced the to-go-only restaurant model. As of June 5, 2023, the newest Hoover Zaxby’s location is up and running, accepting drive-thru, to-go and pickup orders. 

Less Space Means More Chicken 

Without a dine-in option, to-go-only franchisees can scout Zaxby’s venues with smaller footprints. In fact, the new franchise in Hoover takes up just 2,000 square feet — that’s about two-thirds smaller than dine-in Zaxby’s venues, meaning lower overheads and the potential for higher profits. 

Despite the reduced square footage, there’s still a lot going on at Zaxby’s to-go locations — they include walk-up windows for guests placing in-person orders; outdoor patios with a small seating section; and, of course, the ever-popular double-lane drive-thru. 

In explaining his decision to open a to-go-only venue, Chicken Scratch Holdings owner Russell Pate said, “We are very excited to bring this new to-go concept to Hoover and serve our delicious chicken fingers and wings to the community.” And getting Zaxby’s out in the world isn’t the only community benefit to come from this new model. Despite the lack of dine-in options at his new Zaxby’s franchise, Pate notes, “We have hired 50 new team members at this location and look forward to providing opportunities for growth within our organization.”

Expanding To-Go-Only Options

Now, Pate is no stranger to the Zaxby’s family. The elevated chicken joint opened its first-ever location in 1990, in Statesboro, Georgia. However, Chicken Scratch Holdings is a relatively early franchisee, having opened its first Zaxby’s store in 2004. Since then, its holdings have expanded and, today, Pate’s company operates 10 Zaxby’s locations across Alabama — with four of them located in Hoover.

Of course, the newest Hoover location is Pate’s first venture into the to-go-only model. But it’s not a brand-new concept for the chicken chain. In fact, Zaxby’s first to-go-only store popped up in 2022, with a location in Memphis, Tennessee. A second store following this model opened in early 2023, in Clemson, South Carolina. But both were run by the Zaxby’s corporation and, unlike Pate’s new Hoover store, were not part of the restaurant’s vast network of franchises.

Whether corporate owned or franchised, one of the key advantages of the to-go-only store model is faster service. When guests hit the drive-thru, they’ll enjoy double-lane layouts, each equipped with new digital menu boards, along with dedicated payment windows and doors, all designed to expedite the payment and pickup process. And, for customers who want their Zaxby’s the second they roll up to the store, there’s an even faster option: Order ahead online via the Zaxby’s app, or through DoorDash, Uber Eats, or GrubHub. (Online ordering options vary by location.)  As an added bonus to customers, those who use the app and sign up for the Zax Rewardz loyalty program can earn points with every order, meaning more Zaxby’s for all, whether you’re getting your delicious chicken at a to-go-only or dine-in location.

By Manali