Chick-Fil-A Is Giving Away Free Food—All You Have to Do Is Put Down Your Phone

03/03/2016 at 09:28 AM ET

Courtesy Chick-Fil-A

Would you put your phone away for an entire meal in exchange for free ice cream?

That’s exactly what Chick-fil-A franchise owner Brad Williams is hoping to inspire with his new family challenge “Cell Phone Coop.”

“We really want our restaurant to provide a sense of community for our customers, where family and friends can come together and share quality time with one another,” the operator of a Suwanee, Georgia location told Inside Chick-fil-A.

RELATED: The Chick-Fil-A Diet Now Exists — and Calls for Chicken Nugget Consumption Every 3 Hours

“But as we all know, technology increasingly demands more of our time and can be a big distraction, even while we’re eating. This got me thinking about what we could do to reduce this distraction during meals.”

Courtesy Chick-Fil-A

So Williams created a “coop” or a cardboard box for each table at this restaurant to harbor family’s silenced phones while they eat. The best part about it (besides the distraction-free meal of course) is once you’ve completed the challenge, you receive a complimentary Icedream cone.

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His idea has become so popular that more than 350 locally owned Chick-fil-a locations have adopted the family-friendly contest.

“The challenge has completely taken off,” says Williams. “We have families who aren’t successful the first time and come back to try again. We even have people asking to take the boxes home with them! Our whole community is talking about it.”

RELATED: 11 Secret Menu Items You Can Order at Fast Food Restaurants

Since we’d do just about anything for ice cream, challenge accepted, Mr. Williams. It can’t be that hard, right?

—Ana Calderone, @anacalderone

FILED UNDER: Food , Food News , Restaurants

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goodie on

The Duggar family was all over this but then realized they couldn’t tweet about it and paid for the chicken instead.

slk on

How SAD and pathetic we have become as a society. A fast food place has to bribe families to put down their phones???!! WHY? Because clueless parents can’t take their fat faces out of their phone just like their spoiled little brat kids. I watched a couple with about a 3 year old child at a table near ours. From the time they sat down- those two parents had their faces in their phones. 3 year old sat, doing nothing. THEN he had to go to the bathroom. NEITHER parent would put their phone down to take him. You could just see the turmoil- you do it- no you do it. So they pointed and sent him ALONE! Yes, I got up and followed him. Helped him open the door. Waited outside and made sure he made it back to the table. I have no words for what I see in regards to this on a daily basis. People CANNOT even drive without their phones in hand. People dying because of it. Why not LEAVE your phones in the car until done eating. I mean that is like an hour or less. If you cannot do it then YOU have serious issues. Maybe parents today don’t know how to talk to their kids. Sad………..

sally on

Would you put your phone away for an entire meal in exchange for free ice cream?
So now people have to be bribed to put down their phones when they eat with their family? How disgusting. How about leaving your phones in the car? It’s like an hour or less. If you cannot do it- then you have serious issues. ANYONE who cannot text while driving also has SERIOUS issues. Putting the lives of other in danger is ridiculous. PULL OVER! I saw a couple with their 3 year old- at a table. Had phones in hand from the minute they sat down. He needed to go to bathroom. Neither would put phone down to take him. Point to bathroom- go by yourself. ME- up and follow poor little one. Hold door open so he can go in and use bathroom. Wait for him to come out. Watch him get safely back to his miserable parents. They had NO clue a stranger helped their son go to the bathroom. DISGUSTING. Wake up folks. Taking an hour away from you phone to eat and talk with family is SO important.
Why should a fast food joint have to bribe YOU with ice cream to put your phone down??? I would be SO embarrassed to actually take them up on this.

Missy on

I LOVE LOVE this idea! We need more families spending time together and less phone time.

Anonymous on

So agree Missy!

stacie ann on

nooooooooooooo. you will take my phone away from my cold dead hands

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I’m so glad you found that tip helpful! It really changed how my images looked once I started raising my ISO.

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