Chick-Fil-A: Put Your Cell Phone Away and We’ll Give You Free Dessert!

Chick-Fil-A is offering a tasty incentive to customers who abstain from distracted eating. It’s become a sign of the times: we’re in public and notice everyone around is staring at their phones. They’re on social media, surfing the web, or texting friends. We’ve all done it. Our attention is anywhere but where we are.

Chick-Fil-A wants to encourage people to be present with the people they are with and has developed a new plan that could mean free ice cream on your next visit.

In a statement, CFA leadership explained, “Americans now spend an average of 4.7 hours per day on their phone … Although our phones were meant to bring us closer together, they can sometimes have the opposite effect.”

In 150 participating stores across the country, you can get what they are calling the “Coop” to hold your phone while you eat. At the end of your meal, they’ll reward your undistracted ways with free ice cream. They are calling it the “Cell Phone Coop” challenge.

The luring distraction of the mobile phones (and other tech) is something many families should think about carefully. Maybe the “coop” concept is something we could use in our own homes during family meals. What if every family embraced technology-free times of the week when we actively fight against constant distraction?

We applaud Chick-Fil-A for taking this step to encourage face-to-face, distraction-free communication and shine a light on how distracted we can all quickly become.

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Andrew Hess
Andrew Hess is the director of content at the White Horse Inn and editor of He formerly served as the editor of His writing has been featured on The Gospel Coalition and Focus on the Family. He lives in San Diego with his wife Jen and they recently welcomed their first child. Connect with Andrew on Twitter @AndrewWHess.