Are food carts better than food trucks?

Did you know that research found that restaurants receive more safety and health violations than food carts or trucks? Street food is one of the best food businesses in the world as a consequence of the fast world and the need for fast food everywhere. Yet there is always a big competition between the food carts and food trucks in this arena of street food so we will explore in this article which is better.

Basic Intro

A food cart, in clear words, is a kitchen that is mobile through an attachment mechanism to another vehicle or movement by pushing or pulling, established on the street to facilitate the sales of street food to people. In contrast, food trucks typically take extra space as the vehicle and the mobile kitchen are one and the same. Both are convenient and capable of serving a wide variety of mouth-watering street food. Both can have fresh food prepared and served to their customers right away. However, there are some important factors that must be taken into consideration before deciding which is the right business startup for you.


In the case of food trucks, the bigger size allows the truck owner to have more stock and more options on the menu as compared to a food cart. For the food cart, the smaller size means the options for the menu remain constrained but this smaller size of the food carts allows the cart owner to take their business and park in places where the food trucks can't maneuver into easily. 


Food carts are relatively small and easily movable from one place to another but food trucks have a distinct advantage in that the engine is with the food truck so you can drive it anywhere you want without much of a hassle. In case of food carts, you need to use your vehicle for moving it from one place to another through a hitching mechanism. You will need to have an SUV or pickup truck that is retrofitted with this hitching mechanism. Most standard hitches have 2"x2" receivers and use a 2" ball mount - very common. 


This is a really important and immediate factor when you are starting a business. The cost factor is the limiting factor when starting a business comes in mind. Is it in my budget or can I afford it relative to the high cost of food trucks? A food truck can be expensive. You might have to take a loan or a credit from the bank to purchase a food truck so you will be paying the bank on a whopping amount plus the interest that will be charged over the time period of the loan. Since food trucks have engines in them you should not forget that there will be long and expensive maintenance bills for these food trucks. You also need to have additional licenses for these vehicles to run on the road

The food carts are no doubt the inexpensive option here if you're just starting out. The food cart is your affordable option. If you’re planning to buy a food cart, you can buy it straight away without a loan from the bank or you can loan some amount of money from your friends and family to actually start your food cart business and you will also avoid the long and expensive maintenance bills like in the case of food trucks.

Start solo

Since you're planning to start out your business in food industry and you are low on budget, it means it's tough to hire someone and pay them a payroll on a weekly or a monthly basis. Sadly, food trucks need a minimum of two people to operate them in most jurisdictions but food carts can be started alone.


Now you know major differences between a food truck and a food cart.  You know that a food truck will require a bigger investment as compared to a food cart. Plus, the food truck also needs a lot of maintenance as compared to a food cart. As such, the food cart is the more affordable option of the two. In addition, you can operate the food cart solo, move it by hand where needed to hitch it to your vehicle, taking advantage of the greater mobility it provides. Overall, the food cart business is an excellent startup idea for an entrepreneur as compared to a food truck.