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Making Money Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
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outhustleu Offline
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Post: #26
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
(11-05-2013 04:42 PM)McQueensPlayboyRules Wrote:  I've been mulling this over in my head last few weeks regarding opening a hot dog stand in LA.

I'm talking about the portable grills you see selling the bacon wrapped hot dogs.

I've observed these cats selling a shit ton of hot dogs over the years and clearly their overhead is low.

Also, it appears I could get 1 up with a very small investment of around $5,000.

The potential beauty of it is I could hire people to run it for cheap and still turn a good profit. Somewhere around $5k+ a month and with little time invested.

Anyone have experience with this?

Though this seems like an easy business to start some cities don't like allowing carts and food trucks or have alot of red tape to jump through to start one.

That said I think hotdog stand could make decent money. If you really want to succeed you need an edge, something more interesting than the ordinary hotdog. Maybe bacon wrapped hotdogs deep fried, maybe deep fried hotdogs like that place out east that calls theirs rippers because they pop open. Maybe do movie star themed dogs like the Donnie Brasco is a pound hot dog with pepperoni, giardinara, and marinara sauce and other more interesting hot dogs like that. Obviously that also requires more ingredients and inventory as well
11-06-2013 12:01 PM
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Christian McQueen Offline
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Post: #27
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
"Agree with el mech. You're going to have a hard time finding girls to man a cart for hours on end every day."

3 nights a week for 4 hours a night. It's not that much and I already have 2 hot girls who I've talked to and have known for 3+ years who are eager for the potential job.
Additionally, I would be there as well in the beginning, so technically they're not even needed.

"Those mexican grill carts in front of clubs are technically illegal. They get busted pretty regularly and I've seen it happen twice. Cops come by and these people have to dump all the food in the trash since they're selling food to the public without the required operating and health permits."

Correct, a lot of them are, however, I have no intentions of not getting the proper permits and I'm definitely not worried about the cops.

Between my connects for county permits and friends on the force, permits and cops are the easy part.

Somebody mentioned what type of hot dogs; specifically bacon wrapped hot dogs. La people go bonkers for these and they are pretty badass lol.
11-06-2013 12:12 PM
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speakeasy Offline
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Post: #28
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
By no means am I trying to rain on anyone's parade because maybe this very well is a great but overlooked idea, but I can't help but wonder if it was that easy to make $16k a month selling hotdogs for 3 days a week, why isn't the market saturated with people doing that? Especially when the barrier to entry is so low?

I may be missing something key.

Also I never see these carts on Venice Beach or around 3rd Street Promenade. Maybe those are good areas to set up too.
(This post was last modified: 11-06-2013 01:38 PM by speakeasy.)
11-06-2013 01:36 PM
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outhustleu Offline
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Post: #29
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
(11-06-2013 01:36 PM)speakeasy Wrote:  By no means am I trying to rain on anyone's parade because maybe this very well is a great but overlooked idea, but I can't help but wonder if it was that easy to make $16k a month selling hotdogs for 3 days a week, why isn't the market saturated with people doing that? Especially when the barrier to entry is so low?

I may be missing something key.

Also I never see these carts on Venice Beach or around 3rd Street Promenade. Maybe those are good areas to set up too.

I think probably because the city doesn't want it and doesn't allow it. I know in my city a guy wanted to have a hotdog stand downtown in the bar district. It was literlaly like years of him working at the city coucnil to allow it to happen and even when it did they really put restrictions on where he could be, the hours he sold and he was only issued a temporary permit for a few months to see how it went.

Also, they don't like people hanging out and congregating on the streets in the evening when bars are open and closing so they don't let him sell at night which would be the BEST time by far to be there when bars are letting our or when people are outside the bars smoking.
11-06-2013 02:12 PM
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Laner Offline
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Post: #30
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
(11-06-2013 01:36 PM)speakeasy Wrote:  By no means am I trying to rain on anyone's parade because maybe this very well is a great but overlooked idea, but I can't help but wonder if it was that easy to make $16k a month selling hotdogs for 3 days a week, why isn't the market saturated with people doing that? Especially when the barrier to entry is so low?

I may be missing something key.

Also I never see these carts on Venice Beach or around 3rd Street Promenade. Maybe those are good areas to set up too.

Its hard to get the required permits and licensing. At least here it is.

They run it on a lottery system, and if you get the license, it makes it easier to keep adding more permits and licenses. Thats why the guy I knew also had a bit of luck on his side.

- Inside knowledge.
- Won the lottery system
- Scaled into 4 stands as quickly as possible.
11-06-2013 04:01 PM
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saeta119 Offline
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Post: #31
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
I wonder if a hot dog stand would work here in EE, could be ground breaking with the correct marketing
11-06-2013 04:27 PM
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MrXY Offline
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Post: #32
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
There's a guy who has a hot dog cart in front of my favorite pick up bar. He or a chick I guess is his wife /girlfriend are usually there Fri and Sat year round and sometimes Thurs or even Wed in the tourist season. He gets there about 10 and works until 430 (place closes at 4) Most of his business is done from 2 to 430 when people are headed home and hungry.

He charges $4 for a dog and also sells chips and drinks for a buck or two. I would estimate he grosses $200 on an off season night. I'm sure he does very well during Spring Break and summer weekends. The cart is called "Doggy Style"

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11-06-2013 04:44 PM
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obrero Offline
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Post: #33
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
I looked into this a while ago. In my city, Austin, TX. the overhead would be higher because they regularly send food inspectors to the food trucks and stands and they require you to maintain a commercially zoned kitchen for food prep, not your apartment/condo/house, which also gets inspected regularly.
11-06-2013 06:35 PM
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saeta119 Offline
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Post: #34
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
so I'm thinking more about how this would come to work.

And I have two questions

1) how would you handle the storage of the equipment? your employees will have to go to x location and somehow move this to the spot where you will sell (cost of storage and transport?)

2) Will you be the one at 5am (or whenever it closes) ready to collect the money and the equipment? (if not, costs for a manager to handle this?)
11-07-2013 06:11 AM
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eradicator Offline
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Post: #35
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?



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12-16-2013 12:34 AM
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Sebastian Offline
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Post: #36
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
It will never work. Because you can't watch them, stealing it from you. Plus, if they see you making such markups and only paying them say $12 an hour, they would rather buy hot dog carts on their own.
It will only work if you have an access to a sick location (I tried to get into the farmers market. I couldn't get in for several years) and figure out how you can monitor guys.

Anyways, this is not related to the topic. I noticed there are lounge bars only open at night in hollywood. (some of them were dead even on weekend)
Do you think the owner would be interested if I want to sell casual sushi till the bar opens?
He will take cuts and I also bring the crowd who might come as a customer when the bar opens.
12-16-2013 05:18 AM
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AntiTrace Offline
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Post: #37
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
The best advice I think I got on this forum was someone telling me that after I ran all my financial numbers to double your expenses and half your profit, if the numbers still work, execute.

You got low overhead and it seems like its pretty simply to setup, barring any town issues getting a vendors permit. Just do it.

I will say that you need to be very careful if you plan on running a cash only business with hired help. When I was running christmas tree stands the site I was at always killed it, my other sites had surprisingly low margins. At first I chalked it up to me being a better salesperson than the staff I placed at my others. I then realized I was just being naive and those fuckers were skimming off the top and pocketing the cash.

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12-16-2013 07:27 AM
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deznutz Offline
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Post: #38
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
I believe you would need a license to even vend food. On the flip side why not make an modeling agency and/or become a celeb photographer? I'm not talking paparazzi, but the guys doing shoots for all those big Hollywood events? It soulds like you have all the connects to get one started.
12-16-2013 07:58 AM
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HonantheBarbarian Offline
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Post: #39
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
I read an article on this a while back, and from what I understand the average net income yearly for these things is $40-50K. Not bad at all.
12-19-2013 05:36 PM
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Sailor Offline
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RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
(11-05-2013 09:57 PM)Hotwheels Wrote:  haha Just found this on the site I listed above;

[Image: hdpic.gif]


http://www.thehotdogcart.com/hd_stories.html


and that is what Hot Dog places look like in SA

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12-21-2013 06:04 AM
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BlurredLines Offline
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Post: #41
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
McQueen - Would be interested to hear if you took this any further?
12-21-2013 06:39 AM
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birdrussell Offline
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Post: #42
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
my dude was looking into a roach coach to sell falafle out of. He said he'd have 2 kinds of falafle and 3 kinds of hummus and a couple different sauses. I assume white and red. everything seemed to make since. Just buy in as much bulk as makes since while still maintaining quality and make sure your workers aren't stiffing you. Do the day thing outside of touristy venues and at night have it parked right out side the club. you might even pull better than $5K a month if your strategy is on point.

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12-21-2013 07:37 AM
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Sombro Offline
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Post: #43
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
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12-21-2013 06:34 PM
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Christian McQueen Offline
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Post: #44
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
(12-21-2013 06:39 AM)BlurredLines Wrote:  McQueen - Would be interested to hear if you took this any further?

The idea is on hold until next year. Some other business opportunities presented themselves to me, so we'll see.
12-21-2013 06:47 PM
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Carlos100 Offline
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Post: #45
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
FWIW, a friend of a friend owned a house across the street from a large gay club in Seattle, in an area where there weren't many after-hour eating places. He set up a hot dog stand in his front yard. He said that he made a killing selling dogs to the gay guys when they spilled out of the club around 2-3 a.m. I don't know if selling on his own property allowed him to shortcut all the permits he otherwise would have had to obtain from the municipality or not.
06-18-2014 07:41 AM
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DJ-Matt Offline
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Post: #46
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
Didn't notice this was a necro thread until hitting the near bottom, but I think it would be near impossible to turn a profit on this in California. Between permits and government bullshit if you made any money they'd just tax that away.

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06-18-2014 11:00 AM
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heavy Offline
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Post: #47
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
Great idea...Yep, it would all come down to permits, FDA, and gov't stuff. I don't really know how that goes in Hollywood CA.

Also, having a chic there would draw guys, but you'd want a guy there for any potential drunk-asses (ie me) hitting on her and harassing her.

Seems like a really easy thing to run the #s on tho, which is ideal in business.

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(This post was last modified: 06-18-2014 11:19 AM by heavy.)
06-18-2014 11:17 AM
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jamaicabound Offline
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Post: #48
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
I have a buddy in rest biz for like 15 years. He was looking at hotdog stands. Good business. Not sure how it is in LA but in our area city is a pain in the ass. Some guy just got a license but took him like 3 years and even then its like a summer trial probation peruod to see if theyl continue to allow it. Also he cant stay open til the bars let out which wouod be prime business time. Hot dog stand aint bad but a better option is doing festivals and stuff. You pick when and where you wana work. You can charge ridiculous prices anf you generally just specialize in one or a few items
06-18-2014 11:41 AM
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RURALGAMER Offline
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Post: #49
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
(11-05-2013 04:42 PM)Christian McQueen Wrote:  I've been mulling this over in my head last few weeks regarding opening a hot dog stand in LA.

I'm talking about the portable grills you see selling the bacon wrapped hot dogs.

I've observed these cats selling a shit ton of hot dogs over the years and clearly their overhead is low.

Also, it appears I could get 1 up with a very small investment of around $5,000.

The potential beauty of it is I could hire people to run it for cheap and still turn a good profit. Somewhere around $5k+ a month and with little time invested.

Anyone have experience with this?


Hey man I can get you in touch with a guy. He is the ONLY one around here doing it.
I'll get his number for you and then PM it over if you are interested. Might take a week or so.
06-19-2014 03:59 PM
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Christian McQueen Offline
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Post: #50
RE: Anyone ever owned/own a hot dog stand?
^Appreciate it, but I passed on the idea a while back.

Thanks anyway.
06-19-2014 04:00 PM
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