Chick-Fil-A Franchise: Everything You Should Know 2023

Chick-Fil-A Franchise

Do you want to run your own Chick-fil-A restaurant? If so, you’re probably curious about how to become an official owner. In this article, we will cover the most frequently asked questions about opening a Chick-fil-A franchise. We’ll also give you some pointers for figuring out if opening your own Chick-fil-A franchise makes sense.

Read on for useful information about Chick-fil-A franchise ownership, whether you’re just curious about the franchise business model or you’re ready to take the plunge.


Chick-fil-A franchises are less expensive to open than other fast-food restaurants, with a fee of only $10,000.

However, the odds are stacked against you becoming a Chick-fil-A franchise operator.

According to a company spokesperson, approximately 60,000 people apply for a franchise each year, with only about 80 being selected, giving applicants a 0.13% chance of success, which is only slightly better than the odds of a high-school basketball player being drafted into the NBA (about 0.03%).

If you want to run one of the 120 Chick-fil-A locations that open each year, you should be prepared for a rigorous vetting process.

It all starts when you formally apply to be a candidate. Chick-fil-A offers informational sessions across the country to learn more and get your questions answered if becoming a franchisee is right for you, but it is not required and you can apply without attending. When you’re ready to put your hat in the ring, start by entering your email address on the Chick-fil-A franchise information page.

Following that, you’ll receive an application and, according to reports, a dozen or more interviews. Some interviews are conducted over the phone, but franchisees have also reported being interviewed via video chat and in person. Even after multiple rounds of interviews, you can be dropped from the candidate program at any time.

What is a Chick-fil-A franchise?

Chick-fil-A is a restaurant chain that specializes in chicken sandwiches and other menu items. The Chick-fil-A cow standing in front of the restaurant with the words “Eat Mor Chikin” written on it is their logo.

Their corporate headquarters are in College Park, Georgia. The first Chick-fil-A restaurant opened in Atlanta, Georgia in 1967, and the company now has over 2,800 locations, the majority of which are in the United States.

History of the Chick-fil-A Franchise

Truett Cathy founded Chick-fil-A in 1946 in Hapeville, Georgia, with his first restaurant, The Dwarf Grill. He founded Chick-fil-A in the early 1960s and began opening restaurants in shopping malls in 1967. Chick-fil-A has since grown to become the second-largest quick-service chicken restaurant chain in the United States.

The franchise model is built on a simple formula: produce a high-quality product at a reasonable cost while providing excellent customer service.

This has contributed to Chick-fil-A becoming one of the country’s most successful restaurant chains. Aside from its menu offerings, the company is known for its Christian values and conservative stance on social issues. This has caused some controversy, but it has also earned the company a loyal customer base.

Opening and Operating Requirements for a Chick-Fil-A Franchise

It is critical to remember how difficult it is to open a franchise. Getting into Harvard is easier than opening a Chick-Fil-A! Only about 0.4% of applicants are approved to open a Chick-Fil-A restaurant. Meanwhile, only 5% of Harvard applicants are accepted.

Furthermore, if you are considering opening a location, you must work 60-70 hours per week to operate your restaurant. While Chick-Fil-A can help with financial resources when starting, it is important to remember the time commitment that owners expect once their location opens.

When applying, you should expect a thorough vetting process, similar to that of any other franchise. Expect interviews, credit checks, and discussions with other operators. When you become a business owner, you will be constantly judged. If you perform well, the company will give you the right to open more locations. A standard Chick-Fil-A franchise takes 18-24 months to open. During this time, many new owners shadow veteran stores to be ready to go when their Chick-Fil-A opens.

Sunday Closure is Required.

It is also important to note that all Chick-Fil-A locations are required to close on Sundays. The Cathy family is Christian, and they believe that all employees, not just executives, should be able to rest and worship on Sunday if they so desire.

Chick-Fil-A is also known for paying its employees among the highest wages in the industry. Chick-Fil-A typically pays about 11% more than the national fast-casual restaurant average. This, in addition to being closed on one weekend day, enables the brand to attract a large number of applicants to work in its restaurants. This is a significant benefit to franchisees, as many other chains have struggled to maintain a large enough team since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Is a Chick-fil-A Franchise a Good Investment?

Now that you’ve learned a little bit more about Chick-fil-A and what they have to offer, you can decide whether owning one of their franchises is right for you. Here are a few things to think about:


  • Chick-fil-A is a well-known brand with a devoted following.
  • They have a tried-and-true business model that works in both good and bad economic times.
  • Their restaurants are usually in high-traffic areas.
  • Chick-Fil-A provides extensive training and support to franchisees.
  • They provide a distinct product that is difficult for competitors to replicate.


  • When you own a restaurant, you do not own or receive any equity. Chick-Fil-A owns it, and you are considered an “Operator,” which means you cannot sell or transfer your Chick-Fil-A location.
  • Chick-Fil-A requires franchise owners of their fast food restaurants to work full-time at their location, running day-to-day operations. Unlike many other franchise opportunities, this is not a passive investment.
  • A franchisee cannot open multiple locations, limiting your profits.

Do You Want to Buy Chick-Fil-A Stock? Unfortunately, They Are Privately Owned.

Chick-Fil-A is a Georgia corporation that was founded on March 23, 1964, and operates under the trade name Chick fil A. S. Truett Cathy, the founder, opened his first restaurant, the Dwarf Grill, in April 1946 in Hapeville, Georgia. Dan Cathy has been the Chief Executive Officer since November 2013, having previously served as the Assistant Secretary since June 2001. Chick-Fil-A stock is currently privately held, and there are no plans to offer shares to the public. Many restaurant chains, including McDonald’s, Chipotle, and Starbucks, allow their customers to purchase stock in the company.

Chick-fil-A Menu and Statistics

Many people are unaware that Chick-fil-A serves breakfast. Breakfast sandwiches with chicken and eggs are available on the menu. The most well-known aspect of the company, however, is the chick fil sauces. These sauces are now available in grocery stores across the country. Chick-fil-A’s customer service is also a brand staple, with employees famously saying “My pleasure.”

Chick Fil nutrition facts are listed on the menu alongside Chick Fil A calories. There are also healthier alternatives to fried chicken sandwiches, such as Chick-fil-a salads! A sandwich will cost you $4.99 and a meal will cost you $12.00.

Dessert options include milkshakes and cookies for those with a sweet tooth. Chick-fil-A catering is also extremely popular! People enjoy the nugget trays for special occasions and holidays. There is also Chick-Fil-A delivery, which is handled by doordash. To earn rewards points, download the Chick-Fil-A app. People frequently inquire about when Chick-Fil-A is open; however, the company is closed every Sunday for religious reasons.

How Does Chick-Fil-A Set Itself Apart From the Competition?

Chick-fil-A distinguishes itself from its competitors in several ways. One of the most notable examples is its outstanding customer service. Chick-fil-A is well-known for its attentive and friendly customer service. Employees are taught to use phrases such as “my pleasure” rather than “you’re welcome” to improve the customer experience. In addition, the company places a high value on cleanliness and creating a welcoming environment in its restaurants.

Another way Chick-fil-A distinguishes itself is through the quality of its food. The company is well-known for its delicious chicken sandwiches and nuggets. The company prepares its food using a proprietary pressure cooking process that results in juicy, tender chicken. One of the reasons for the chain’s popularity is the distinct flavor of chicken sandwiches and nuggets.

Marketing That Stands Out

Chick-fil-A’s branding and marketing campaigns differ from those of its competitors. To promote the brand, the company employs a catchy “Eat Mor Chikin” slogan and cows as mascots. Customers are familiar with the company’s advertising campaigns that feature a fictional character named “Ann” who represents the restaurant’s spicy fried chicken.

Chick-fil-A also has unique menu items, which distinguishes it from other fast food restaurants that primarily serve burgers and fries. The company’s menu does not only include chicken sandwiches and nuggets; they also offer unique sandwiches, salads, sides, and desserts.

Finally, Chick-fil-A is well-known for its strong community involvement, hosting events, and supporting local organizations in the communities where its restaurants are located. This distinguishes it from other fast-food restaurants, which have a more transactional relationship with their customers.

What Is the Cost of a Chick-Fil-a Franchise?

To get started with your own Chick-Fil-A franchise, an initial investment of $10,000 is required. While the initial franchise fee can range between $342,990 and $1,982,225, a franchisee is only responsible for the initial franchise fee. Chick-fil-A takes care of the rest.

Cost of a Chick-fil-A Franchise (Breakdown)

  • The initial franchise fee: $10,000.
  • Opening Inventory ranges from $19,000 to $93,050.
  • Equipment Rental for the First Month: $750 – $5,000
  • First Month’s Lease / Premises Sublease: $2,500 – $85,800
  • Expenses for the First Month of Insurance: $310 – $11,510
  • Additional funds: $186,495 to $2,707,337.

How to Invest in a Chick-fil-A Franchise

If you want to become a franchisee, follow these steps:

#1. Attend a Training Session

To learn more about the franchising process, you must first attend an informational session. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about owning a Chick-fil-A franchise during this session.

#2. Fill Out an Application

You will be able to submit an online application after attending an informational session. After your application has been reviewed, you will be contacted to set up an interview. It’s a good idea to review the company’s history and values before your interview.

#3. Interview with Chick-fil-A

During your interview, you will meet with a Chick-Fil-A franchising representative who will ask you questions about your background, experience, and why you want to own a Chick-fil-A franchise. They will also determine if you are a good fit for the company. This is also an excellent time to ask any questions you have about the franchising process.

 #4. Be Approved by the Franchise Board

If the Franchise Board approves you, you will be able to sign a franchise agreement and begin the process of opening your restaurant. Congratulations on making it this far! Few people are allowed to become a Chick-Fil-A fast food restaurant franchisee.

#5. Complete your Training

After signing your franchise agreement, you must attend a multi-week training program at Chick-fil-A’s Restaurant Support Center in Atlanta, Georgia. This course will teach you everything you need to know about running a Chick-fil-A franchise.

#6. Launch your Restaurant

You’ll be ready to open your restaurant once you’ve completed your training. Chick-fil-A’s experienced team of franchise consultants will assist you throughout the process. They will assist you in all aspects of your project, from site selection to grand opening.

What Is the Profitability of a Chick-fil-A Franchise?

Chick-fil-A is one of the most profitable fast-food restaurants in the United States, with annual sales exceeding $11 billion.

Only McDonald’s has more than $40 billion in annual revenue. Owners earn an average of $220,000 per year. Chick-fil-A restaurants also make an average of $5.3 million per year.

Important Info for Potential Chick-fil-A Franchisees

There are a few more things you should know if you want to open a Chick-fil-A franchise, such as:

  • Sundays, as well as Thanksgiving and Christmas, are off-limits. This is because the company has religious roots. S. is the founder. Truett Cathy was a deeply religious Southern Baptist.
  • Chick-fil-A has locations not only in 47 states and Washington, D.C., but also in Puerto Rico, Canada, South Africa, and the United Kingdom.
  • In addition to the $10,000 franchise fee, Chick-fil-A operators pay a 15% royalty fee plus 50% of pretax profit. Furthermore, they require their franchisees to have no other active business ventures. So, if you’re a serial entrepreneur, working for Chick-Fil-A isn’t for you.
  • Every year, over 20,000 applications are received, but only 75 to 80 are accepted to open new franchises (about 0.4% on the high end). As a result, competition for these positions is fierce.
  • The selection process can last between 12 and 24 months. So, if you want to open a Chick-fil-A franchise, be prepared for a lengthy and difficult process.

Chick-fil-A Franchise Facts

Other facts about the Chick-fil-A franchise include:

  • The Chick-fil-A Chicken Sandwich, the company’s signature menu item, was invented by S. Cathy Truett in the 1960s.
  • The name “Chick-fil-A” is a play on the words “chicken filet,” as the original sandwich was made with a boneless chicken breast filet.
  • Chick-fil-A is the largest chicken restaurant chain in the United States, as well as one of the country’s fastest-growing fast-food chains.
  • Chick-fil-A is known for its excellent customer service, and its employees are trained to use phrases such as “my pleasure” rather than “you’re welcome” to improve the customer experience.
  • “Eat Mor Chikin,” Chick-fil-A’s cow mascot, was created in 1995. The “Eat Mor Chikin” cows were designed to encourage customers to eat more chicken instead of beef.
  • Chick-fil-A’s “Chick-fil-A Sauce” is a unique blend of honey mustard, barbecue sauce, and ranch dressing. It’s a popular dipping sauce for chicken nuggets and sandwiches.
  • Every year, Chick-fil-A hosts a cow appreciation day, during which customers dressed as cows receive free chicken sandwiches.
  • Chick-fil-A is also well-known for its charitable contributions through its WinShape Foundation, which supports education, marriage, and foster care programs.

Chick-Fil-A Franchise Fees and Costs (Continued):

The corporation pays for the restaurant’s land, construction, and equipment. As a result, it rents or subleases the property to the franchisee for 15% of sales plus 50% of the remaining pretax profit (Paid Monthly).

It also leases all software, which costs between $9,500 and $20,000 per year for high-speed internet access. If a franchisee fails to make their loan payment on time, they will be charged 1.25% interest. Franchisees should also anticipate receiving a small commission whenever a customer uses the Chick-Fil-A rewards app.

Payment for Local Advertising

Chick-fil-A has not charged an advertising fee since 1989, but it reserves the right to do so up to 3.25%. Alternatively, if certain local and regional areas agree, an advertising fee may be imposed. Nonetheless, Chick-fil-A spent $156 million on advertising in 2019, up from $130.9 million in 2020. Given the long history of franchise owners not being charged for advertising, this is a huge benefit.


Chick-Fil-A provides the opportunity to be a part of a highly desired franchise business. The company assists in removing financial barriers to entry by lending up to $2 million. Furthermore, once an operator, Chick-Fil-A rewards owners who master both the Chick-Fil-A sandwich and the operation of their location. When applying for and running a Chick-Fil-A franchise, it is critical to have realistic expectations. People want to open a Chick-Fil-A restaurant franchise because of its history of success and low initial start-up costs. While this may be the right business for you, don’t forget to look at other businesses for sale on Vetted Biz and in the Food and Beverage Industry.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like