Starting a Mobile Catering business such as an Ice Cream Van, Burger Van, Street Food Cart or any other type of catering trailer is an excellent way to start your own business
Many people dream of being their own boss. It’s the fantasy of not having to answer to anyone else or not having meddling managers interfere with your work when you clearly know best.
In your own business you can make the decisions as to what, when, how and why and running your own mobile catering business allows you to do just that. Mostly.
A lot of people are put off from running their own business because it requires a massive capital investment. Many just don’t have access to that amount of cash, yet it's possible to begin operating your Mobile Catering Business with only a few thousand pounds. You won’t have a big fancy motorised trailer for that, but you can be operating and generating revenue.
We always advise new mobile catering businesses to start operating at weekends and evenings, therefore you actually don’t have to give up your day job until you know what you’re doing!
In addition, if you decide it’s not for you, there is a ready market for good second hand units (such as on our Buy / Sell section) meaning you won’t be too much out of pocket.
You don’t need a degree to start a Mobile Catering business, or have had 10 years prior experience (although it would help). The main attributes you need are a bit of business understanding, good people skills, a hard working attitude and lots of ‘get up and go’ to drive you forward on the odd cold or wet morning.
We have known caterers that have been able to set up and start with only a few trading pounds, who then go on to build a fleet of vans worth hundreds of thousands, or move into a restaurants and have turnovers in the tens of millions! Yes it really is possible. If Duncan Bannatyne did it then so can you!
A typical Gross Profit Margin in the Mobile Catering Industry is between 65 - 85% and some are even as high a 95%! Few businesses offer those kind of margins, meaning you’ve got great potential to make a lot of money.
You do of course have to pay for other things as well such as your unit, rent and wages to get your Net Profit, but if you're wise with these then you should be able to make some good money.
Mobile catering is exactly that - Mobile. If business isn't so great in one place you can simply move to another. You can't do that with a restaurant, office or factory! If you want to change the type of food you sell, then that can be done too.
Who wants a boring job? Probably not you, well in this industry you certainly won’t be bored. You’ll meet lots of different people from all different backgrounds.
You can be operating on a Roadside on Friday and a Rock Concert on the Saturday. And the days will go incredibly quick. Promise.
Operating a mobile catering business is no longer about wearing a grease stained apron over a vest covering your significant waist line. It’s gone cool. From converted VW camper vans to Kahuna Huts there’s a new generation of vendors who have brought chic to the industry.
The Street Food Revolution is in full swing and it’s not going away. New markets are springing up everywhere, and the public are loving being able to get quality food easily, quickly and affordably. If you’re thinking of running your own business, then Mobile Catering deserves some serious consideration!
Supporting Caterers is what we at NCASS are about, and we've been helping mobile caterers since 1987. We know everything that you need to know, and can help you to run your business safely, legally and profitably. You're not going it alone!