When you’re learning how to start a food truck business, learning the best places to start a food truck business will help you plan for success. You can dive into the customer experience and customer satisfaction in these spots to model your food truck after them. Getting to know the best places to start a food truck business is a form of forecasting for restaurants for your plans.
From food favorites to community experiences, the best places to start a food truck business vary across the country. In this BinWise blog, we’ll break it down, and get into the shared features of these places as well.
The Best Places to Start a Food Truck Business In America
Across the United States, there are many communities with thriving food truck industries. These days, it’s hard to find a city that doesn’t have at least one food truck. These six cities are well known for having some of the best food trucks. They also have a notable amount of people who are enjoying those food trucks.
6. Nashville, Tennessee
The musical and late-night culture of Nashville makes it an ideal space for food trucks. It has some strict regulations and fees for food trucks, but it’s a prime space for the community around food trucks.
5. New York City, New York
New York City has been a fan of food trucks since long before food trucks swept into the sensation they are today. With the number of food trucks in the city, it can be a long process to get a license, but it’s worth it.
4. Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles, with its array of neighborhoods and community-focused spaces, is perfect for all kinds of food trucks. LA is somewhat lax in its regulations around food trucks compared to other spots on this list.
3. Austin, Texas
Austin is developing a reputation as a place with many delicious options for food trucks, and great profits for food truck owners. Austin has a one-stop shop method for food truck permits, making it relatively easy to get started with your food truck business.
2. Houston, Texas
Houston comes in next to Austin as another hot food truck spot in Texas. The Houston love of Tex-Mex and barbecue foods has made the food truck scene there particularly specific to the location.
1. Portland, Oregon
Portland has been known for years for its amazing food scene. There are over 600 trucks operating in Portland, and there’s always room for more. The process to get started is easy, and once you’ve settled into the scene you’ll find loyal food truck fans.
5 Key Location Needs for Food Truck Businesses
These six cities are among many that are conducive to a successful food truck business. The suitability of a location for food trucks comes down to several shared characteristics that make the community food truck friendly. These five factors are something you’ll notice in places with a lot of food trucks, and they’re signs to look out for when you’re choosing your location.
5. Friendly Zoning Regulations
Friendly zoning regulations are a must for the best places to start a food truck business. Similar to pop-up restaurant regulations, there are specific rules in every place about how food trucks can operate.
4. A Mix of Neighborhoods
The best places for food truck businesses are locations with a variety of distinct neighborhoods. Areas like Portland or LA are good examples of these neighborhoods. A variety of neighborhoods gives food truck owners room to spread out.
3. A Quality Nightlife
A quality nightlife comes in handy for food truck businesses. Customers who are out and about at night are happy to find food trucks open late, serving up great food to keep the nightlife going.
2. An Existing Appreciation for Food Trucks
There are lots of potential locations that could be perfect for food truck businesses. If they don’t already have an appreciation for food trucks, however, it’ll take more time to become a familiar favorite. Spots that already love food trucks are the best place to start.
1. Robust Social Media Presence
Having a robust social media presence is something you can say about many major cities and spots these days. It’s important for food truck businesses because social media marketing and content marketing are some of the best ways to get the word out about your business.
"Key Takeaway: The suitability of a location for food trucks comes down to several shared characteristics that make the community food truck friendly."
Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Food Truck Business Locations
The best places to start a food truck business are great options to start out in. There are, of course, so many other states and cities where you can thrive as a food truck business. You can plan around where your key customer base is, or where the food you cook will be most appreciated. Our answers to these frequently asked questions will provide further insight.
Where Is the Best Place to Own a Food Truck?
Some of the best locations, beyond specific states or cities, to own a food truck include:
- In a food truck park or court, where people can come to explore a multitude of food trucks
- Farmer’s markets, where people are searching for a mix of food and other treats
- Business districts, where people often need a quick and delicious bite for lunch
- Bar areas, where people will be happy to find delicious food right outside their favorite bar
- Festivals and special events, where you can showcase your food truck business to a wide variety of people
These places can be great for finding people who are hungry and looking for something quick and easy. This can also lead to regular customers and fans of your business.
What Is the Most Profitable Food to Make for a Food Truck?
Barbecue is currently sweeping the nation as one of the most popular and profitable foods for a food truck business. You can put your own spin on barbecue, making it work for the best Mexican appetizers, or with a focus on the importance of sustainability. It’s a low-cost food category that can appeal to many different customers.
Where are Food Trucks Most Common?
Food trucks are most common in busy metropolitan areas. The six spots listed in this BinWise blog are some of the most popular food truck destinations in the country currently. That said, anywhere with a bustling culture and a love for great food is a place that attracts food truck businesses.
Who Eats at Food Trucks the Most?
Primarily, the main demographic of food truck customers is Millennials and Generation Z folks. People from the ages of 20 to 44 are showing their love for food trucks and their interest in unique food options. Those age groups make up the majority of people who are spending time out and about enjoying their cities in the areas that attract food truck businesses.
The Best Food Truck Business Locations: Park It, Then Get to Work
These six best food truck locations could be the perfect spot for you to settle in with your food truck business. Of course, there are many other options! Wherever you choose to set up shop, reach out to BinWise and BlueCart as you’re settling in.
The BinWise Pro beverage inventory program, paired with the BinScan mobile app, can help you with perpetual inventory and ease the process of how to do inventory. BlueCart’s order management software for all your restaurant needs simplifies your order management system.