Starbucks addicts in Vancouver have a brand new way to get their fix.
Starting Tuesday, Jan. 19, Starbucks customers in the city will be able to pre-order via a special smartphone app feature, then skip the line in store. The new order and pay service debuted in Canada last October in Toronto. Vancouver is the second participating city, and the service is expected to roll out across the country by this spring, according to the Vancouver Sun.
Mobile Order & Pay, which is integrated into the Starbucks app for both iOS and Android, enables customers to order anything on the Starbucks menu, from beverages to breakfast sandwiches. You choose a participating store after opening up the feature, then browse their menu. Orders can be customized in app, so you can still get your tall, half-caf, soy latte at 120 degrees just the way you like it.
The new technology conveniently shows you an estimated pick-up time at the store of your choosing, and then you can confirm your order and pay. The big benefit, of course, is saved time. Once in the store, you skip the order line and proceed directly to the handoff lane, where your custom-made coffee is already waiting with your name on it.
The new feature works at 130 stores throughout the Lower Mainland in Vancouver, West Vancouver, Burnaby, Richmond and beyond. (No word yet on exactly which locations are participating.) The service debuted in Portland, Oregon, in December 2014, and was subsequently rolled out across the U.S. last September.
Starbucks has long been at the forefront of mobile technologies. The company began offering the option of paying by smartphone back in 2010. Currently, an average of 20 percent of all customers use the mobile payment feature, and Starbucks anticipates that the mobile order functionality will likewise appeal to a big chunk of its regulars.