When your stomach is growling, few sights are more welcoming than a food truck or trailer parked across the road! If you’re thinking about entering the mobile food business market, you might have heard about both these choices: food trucks and food trailers. To decide which option is ideal for you, read on to learn about the five key differences between food trucks vs. food trailers, and what they mean for prospective owners like you.
Vehicle Size and Cooking Space
The amount of cooking space you have to operate with will depend on the length of your vehicle. Food trucks can range from 10 to 26 feet long, while the size range of food trailers is substantially greater, spanning 8 to 53 feet! Larger food trailers can provide space for high-grade kitchen appliances and more cooking methods, thus giving the chef greater culinary flexibility and offering a more diverse menu for customers.
Storage Space and Cleanliness
Naturally, there is more storage space available when your vehicle is larger. Compared to food trucks, food trailers offer much more space for storing ingredients, stoves, grills, other kitchen equipment, and importantly, cleaning supplies. Generally speaking, larger food trailers are easier to keep hygienic and neat, and remaining compliant with food hygiene regulations will help to keep your business thriving. Contrarily, a food truck’s compactness means there are fewer appliances to manage, and it will be faster to deep-clean your space if you’re always on the go.
Maneuverability and Portability
Food trucks have a size advantage over food trailers in being able to fit into and set up shop in smaller places, so a food truck can be driven to a lot more locations than a food trailer can. Moreover, there are some routes and parking spaces that a food trailer legally can’t use due to its large size. A food truck, on the other hand, can effortlessly move about and park just about any place to get more business.
It’s also difficult to rival the portability and ease of operating a food truck. It’s simply easier to drive a food truck as there’s just one single unit to operate. You don’t need to stress about attaching the trailer and ensuring that all the connectors are secure, nor do you need previous experience in driving a massive, two-part vehicle.
Price and Valuation Over Time
Food trailers are typically less expensive because they’re unable to move independently unless you tow them with a sturdy car. With food trucks, you’re paying for mobility, hence the higher price. Purchasing a food truck instead of a food trailer is more advantageous if you intend to travel around to different sites regularly. Furthermore, the depreciation of your vehicle over time is another financial aspect to consider in addition to the upfront cost. In general, a food truck tends to have a higher resale value than a food trailer over time.
Permits and Documentation Required
More business permits and documentation will be required for food trailers than food trucks, as you are stationing two vehicles at a location instead of one. All in all, it’s imperative to understand the advantages and disadvantages of each choice in regard to your specific business model and operating area before you decide!