A steaming hot dog layered with colourful sauces is a real guilty pleasure for lots of us. But have you ever considered starting a hot dog cart franchise business? Here, we take you through some of the best franchise opportunities in the UK at the moment, as well as some alternative takeaway food stall investment opportunities.
Before we dive into the hot dog cart franchises out there and how you can get involved, here’s a quick overview of the state of the street food sector:
Street food is growing in popularity, as more and more consumers opt for quick, tasty dishes they can eat on the go. Experts believe the sector is now worth £1.2 billion in the UK, and particularly attracts the younger demographic. Festivalgoers typically spend around £198 on food and drink every year. And 71 percent of Gen Z consumers have said they’re interested in eating new flavours and foods, which bodes well for the future of street food markets.
Why start a food cart franchise unit?
- Hot dogs, along with burgers, form a key element of the food industry in the UK. They appeal to a wide variety of people at all times of the day, which boosts earning potential.
- Hot dogs tend to work well as a street food choice because they are easy to eat on the go and can be customised to individual preferences with toppings and sauces.
- Preparing and selling hot dogs from a street cart can be profitable, as the investment costs are often low and profit potential is high. And although there are food stalls operating across most major towns and cities, the demand is usually sufficient to generate impressive returns on investment.
- There are loads of ways you can set yourself apart from competitors. When it comes to food stalls, there are simple push-carts, towed trailers, motorised vans and even gazebo stalls, so you can choose the franchise model to suit you.
- Versatile business models will allow franchisees to operate at shows, events, festivals, markets and at the roadside. And here’s the best bit: if you have a street food licence you can follow the crowds to the busiest spots. Maximise sales by moving from a shopping district at lunch time to the local sports venue for an evening match, for example.
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Hot dog cart franchises
1. The Sausage Man
The Sausage Man has been up and running since 2005 and sells premium German meat products across the UK. With good-quality, 100 percent filler-free and gluten-free hot dogs, The Sausage Man represents an attractive prospect for franchisees.
- Becoming a The Sausage Man franchisee: This franchise opportunity allows investors to buy or rent the equipment needed to run a profitable hot dog business. You’ll create a customisable cart with optional extras such as a hot dog roller, grill and sauce station. You can also make use of branded deck chairs, cart umbrellas, pavement signs and branded clothes and aprons.
- How much you need to invest: The Sausage Man hasn’t listed its franchise fee or other prices, so you’ll need to get in touch with the business directly to find out whether it fits your budget.
- What you get for your investment: You can expect to be up and running in just 10 weeks, before treating your new customers to 19 different types of hot dog.
2. The Hot Sausage Company
The Hot Sausage Company currently operates 10 mobile hot dog ‘barrows and tramcars’ across the UK. It’s been in the business since 1986 and caters for a whole host of different events, from parties and weddings to university and corporate gatherings.
- Becoming a The Hot Sausage Company franchisee: This franchise is looking to partner with existing street traders in busy UK towns and cities who want to improve their business potential. Complete the application form on its website to get the ball rolling.
- How much you need to invest: There’s no information on how much it costs to partner with The Hot Sausage Company, but you can contact the business to find out.
- What you get for your investment: You’ll benefit from an extensive training scheme and the use of custom-designed equipment.
Other food cart franchises
There are only a couple of hot dog cart franchises in the UK. But if neither of them are quite right for you and you’ve got your heart set on joining a street food franchise, we do have some alternative options…
Wolf has been selling delicious and nutritious Italian street food since 2015. Its business model caters to the demand for affordable food to be eaten on the go and uses high-quality, locally sourced produce. For example, all meat is bought from farms that adhere to high animal welfare standards and is marinated for at least 24 hours.
Also, Wolf focuses on providing food that eliminates the high levels of carbohydrates and saturated fats that are often associated with Italian cuisine. Busy Brits are able to choose from a selection of nutritious, Italian-inspired dishes that can be eaten in, taken away or delivered.
- Becoming a Wolf franchisee: Find out more about the franchising process on Wolf's profile page.
- How much you need to invest: Investors can choose to be a standard franchisee or a master franchisee, but you’ll need a total of £200,000 to launch a Wolf stall.
- What you get for your investment: The Italian food franchise was created with the franchisee in mind. You don’t need much experience, so you can sell competitively priced Italian street food from the get-go. Also, strong branding, a four-week training programme, ongoing store support and a marketing plan uniquely designed for your territory will give you all you need to flourish.
>> Read more:
Really Awesome Coffee
Have you ever considered starting a mobile coffee van business? The market for ‘coffee to go’ is only getting stronger in the UK, so why not consider this robust beverage franchise?
Really Awesome Coffee started life in Coventry in 2010 and now has a chain of more than 50 franchisees. It offers a wide variety of food and drink options, from gourmet coffees, frappes and smoothies to hot and cold food.
- Becoming a Really Awesome Coffee franchisee: If you have a friendly, enthusiastic attitude, this franchise wants to hear from you. To learn more and sign up, visit the Really Awesome Coffee profile page.
- How much you need to invest: If you want to make really awesome coffee, you’ll need to invest around £69,000. But after two years, you can expect to see a revenue of between £80,000 and £100,000.
- What you get for your investment: Every franchisee benefits from Really Awesome Coffee’s dedicated training programme. You’ll spend two weeks at the coffee franchise’s Coventry training centre before you get another two weeks of support in your territory. After this, the franchise development manager will visit regularly to make sure you’re on the path to profitability.
Get a taste of what’s out there
You only need to travel into your nearest town or city to see hot dog carts and other street food stalls serving eager customers. This is a huge market, and one that’s set to grow in the coming years. If you think you’ve got what it takes to run a successful franchise unit, it’s worth considering the investment opportunities out there, many of which require relatively small start-up fees.
Browse our UK franchise directory to find other hot food and drinks cart franchises.
Alice Tuffery, Point Franchise ©