06/20/09 Update to this post – I wrote this article in 2007 before I started making any money online. I am glad I never pursued trying to make money with vending machines as I am now sure that I can make money easier online. For instance, please see my CashCrate review where I show that I am now making over $800 per month. You may also want to read my 3 part Project Payday review which is another way I make money. Finally you might go to my ways to make money page where I outline different ways to make money online. All in all, making money on the Internet is easier, I believe, than lugging around candy and having a vending machine route. At least for me it is. _______________________________________________________________
Early this year I was looking into different ways to make money and I started looking into candy vending machines as a possibility. At work I had always seen the vending machine guy refill the machines and wondered what it would be like. I knew it would be hard to make a full time income doing it but making money with vending machines seemed like it might be a good part time hobby/job. I found two vending companies on the Internet (1-800 vending and Vendstar) and I actually contacted Vendstar. They had the cooler website and the vending machines I wanted with the triple heads. I got a very large brochure back that was also stuffed with fliers telling me that the “time was right!!!” for me to invest now in my vending future. I soon got a follow-up phone call from them(one of about 3) trying to sell me one of their packages.
The price they were offering always amounted to around $300.00 per triple headed vending machine and they wanted to sell me 30 machines for the first order. They would sell me less but you could tell they were pushing very hard for the 30 machine order. With it came different benefits such as they would set you up with a placing service and other such things. There was no way I was going to spend almost $10,000.00 and never ordered anything through them. If you are ever thinking about buying candy vending machines GO TO EBAY FIRST and type in “vending machines“! I just typed in “Vendstar” into the search and came back with 78 items. Right away the 7th auction down is someone selling 10 Vendstar machine “new in box” for $1000.00! That’s before shipping but significantly cheaper than $300.00 per unit as you would pay from Vendstar. There are many more auctions of new and used machines and I know you can get some for less than $100.00 if you try. In the end I decided the vending machine route thing was too much trouble for not enough profit. There have to be easier work from home jobs. It is’ hard to imagine a machine pulling in much more than $1.oo a day so I would have to have a lot of machines to make it worthwhile. I could have tried to start with a few machines and slowly built up but I was scared that all the good locations for placement were probably all taken. Also, I am not a good salesman and ultimately I feared that might be a problem. Having a candy vending machine route does sound fun but for me there are too many negatives to deal with. If anyone out there has any experiences with owning vending machines please leave me a comment. Below I have outlined some of the pros and cons as I see it of starting a route and trying to make money with vending machines: PROS
- Good opportunity to make money in your spare time
- Be your own boss (always a good thing)
- You can have as many or as few machines as you like
- Where to buy cheap new or used vending machines
- Somewhat passive income
- You need to place your machines / might involve cold calling
- There are start up costs of one or more machines.
- Local business licenses may need to be obtained
- Candy needs to be bought as cheaply as possible. Costco?
- Charities may need to be partnered with for placement
- Machines need to be maintained.
- Machines could be tampered with and/ or broken in the locations
- Meticulous records need to be maintained for tax puposes
- Ways To Rob / Cheat Vending Machines