Most of us know that we do not need any special training to set up a hot dog cart business. What do you really need is to be energetic, outgoing personality and creativity in running your business? Running a hot dog cart business can be stressful as most shopping malls are normally open at 10 am until 10 pm daily and your business is expected to be there in these hours. Even if you have a hot dog cart business in a park or on a street corner, you will have to be there the times your customer base is present to make a living.
However, you will need to check with your city licensing board to ascertain whether setting up hot dog carts are permitted, and in what areas. It is best to develop a business plan for the economic model you desire before starting the business. You might also need to check other hot dog cart vendors to know how many hot dogs they manage to sell and how much profit they made at the end of day. Setup and initial costs, along with your fixed costs, such as gas, electricity, permits and equipment are major concerns of your new business. Here, you will need to calculate the final profit you are expected to earn every day to determine if the business is viable.
Generally, the health department of your district will inspect your business for cleanliness and safety of the foods you serve. The most important key when you are planning to set up a hot dog cart business is to decide which location is most strategic. For example, you can set up your cart at a street corner with high traffic areas that has less food choices. But you will be lucky if you can get the best areas just because you want that location.
The hardest challenge in opening a hot dog cart business is to get your business permit for your local community. Next is determining the politics of the business culture in your area. These types of businesses are often controlled by the restaurant and beverage control board and the best areas are leased to consortium businesses with multiple concerns. This means you may buy your cart and even get a permit to sell your products in a good area, but you must buy your “supplies” from the controlling consortium. This could mean high supply cost and very low profits.
However, if you cannot get the area you want, you still can run your business on a private owned property or functions like fun fairs, baseball games, auctions and flea markets. One of the best ways to keep your startup cost for your cart low is to purchase a used hot dog cart, which is much cheaper than a new one. Normally, you can get a used hot dog cart in the range of $1500 to $3500.
Hot dog cart businesses are an excellent business to start for either, part time or full time, and setup cost are lower than any brick and mortar business. Next to the vending machine business this is one of the easiest and least expensive methods to become an independent business owner.
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