January 17/Miami/Los Angeles Times -- Burger King, in a bid to catch up with McDonalds and take a bite out of the competition posed by fast-food rivals such as Wendy’s, is experimenting with home delivery. Customers can order online or by phone.

Currently, delivery is available only in the Washington, D.C., area and only from a handful of restaurants. However, if successful, the pilot program could see a nationwide rollout.

Customers will pay a $2 delivery charge for a minimum order of $8-10, depending on the restaurant. For now, orders will be accepted only from customers within a 10-minute drive of a restaurant, and the goal is delivery within 30 minutes or less.

Kristen Hauser, a spokeswoman for the Miami-based company, said via email, "New delivery packaging technology, in conjunction with thermal bags, keep food hot & fresh."

Burger King has long been in the delivery service internationally. The chain "has had great success with it all across the globe including in Mexico, Turkey, Brazil, Columbia and Peru," Hauser said. "We are currently testing the service to bring this convenience to the U.S., starting with just a few restaurants in the DC area."

There are no specific plans for a national rollout, the statement said. The company plans to expand the testing to 16 stores by the end of this month.

Not all menu items are available for delivery. The company will not deliver fountain drinks, milkshakes, coffee or breakfast foods, Hauser said.

 From the January 17, 2012, Prepared Foods' Daily News.