5 Things to Know Before Hiring a Food Truck

February 18, 2016 - By: Sarah Hovis

 Americans love to eat and that’s why the food truck concept is perfect—the food comes to you! Or in this case, your event. Not only are food trucks on trend, but they also offer
convenience, variety, and a ‘wow’ factor (think fun photo-ops) your guests will love. Before you book a food truck, remember these five guidelines:
Read the fine print – While food trucks provide convenience, they cannot conveniently park just
anywhere. Obtaining the
necessary permits and insurance is a crucial first step since ordinances and laws vary by city, county, and state. Also, since there is no standard contract for food trucks, read through each one carefully so you're not caught off guard.
 
Figure out your food and portions – Choose your menu carefully just as you would with any other caterer and ask detailed questions to determine which food truck will meet your needs. Some food trucks offer custom menus, while others stick to a specialty. Once you’ve selected your menu, you can calculate how much food you will need. Most experienced food trucks will come prepared with extra, but never assume.
Decide who is doing what ­– Are you providing menu signage for the truck or is the food truck operator? Some food trucks offer music, but if you’ve hired a DJ or live band, you don’t want them competing with each other. These are just two examples of details that need to be ironed out before the event.
Pick a good spot ­– Similar to real estate, location matters. For example, some food trucks can’t handle steep hills or bumpy back roads because it could damage the truck or equipment. And avoid having a food truck on a soft surface like grass. The weather can change quickly and getting a food truck unstuck can get messy and expensive.
Keep the line moving ­– Food trucks are about instant gratification, so get the guests through efficiently by offering a streamlined menu. When lines form, use roving performers to keep guests entertained while they wait. Or better yet, offer guests samples. It will tide them over until they get to the front of the line and hopefully help them decide what they want to order. Oh, and don’t forget to figure out who is taking out the trash. Some food trucks bring trash cans, some do not; have enough on hand so you’re not left with a mess. If you’re still on the food truck fence, check if there is a
food truck festival happening in
your area, so you can see potential hires in action, and of course, taste test the food. Tell us in the comments if you’ve hired a food truck and how it went.