Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs: General

When and where was IHOP founded?

The first IHOP opened July 7, 1958 in Toluca Lake, California. IHOP was founded by brothers Al and Jerry Lapin.

Does IHOP franchise its restaurants?

Yes, 99 percent of our restaurants are franchised. We believe that equity-involved owner/operators as franchisees will provide a better dining experience for our guests. You can learn more about becoming a franchisee here.

Can I buy stock in IHOP?

Yes. IHOP restaurants are franchised and operated by Glendale, Calif.-based International House of Pancakes, LLC and its affiliates. International House of Pancakes, LLC is a subsidiary of DineEquity, Inc., which is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "DIN". You can find more information on our Investor Info page.

Does IHOP support community functions and charities? If so, how do I request support?

IHOP, and the franchisees that operate our restaurants, are proud to support the communities in which we conduct business. At the national level, IHOP's designated charitable cause is helping seriously ill and injured children through our support of Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and other local charities.

Each year, IHOP hosts National Pancake Day, our nationwide fundraiser to benefit children's hospitals in the communities where we do business. The primary beneficiary of IHOP's national philanthropic event is Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. In 2012 alone, IHOP restaurants raised more than $3 million on National Pancake Day — bringing our fundraising total to more than $10 million since the event was created in 2006.

While there are a number of worthy charitable organizations, we have found that we are most effective when we align our national support behind a singular cause through a singular large-scale event. For this reason, IHOP's Restaurant Support Center is unable to accommodate additional requests for assistance.

At the local level, our independent franchisees support a variety of charitable causes through local sponsorships, fundraisers and events. If you are seeking support for your local non-profit, you may wish to contact the owner of your local IHOP. Donations and/or other means of support are given at the discretion of the independent franchisee.

What animal welfare standards does IHOP have in place?


IHOP believes that animal welfare is important and as such we require all suppliers to have animal welfare programs in place that comply with the standards for animal welfare set forth by industry leaders such as:

  • American Meat Institute
  • National Chicken Council
  • National Pork Board

We work with others in our industry and our suppliers in an effort to continuously raise the bar on animal welfare standards. One reason why we’re a member of the National Council of Chain Restaurants (NCCR) is to foster the industry and suppliers in our combined commitment to animal welfare.