Work Abroad

Make Money Selling Food and Drink in the Street

When it comes to thinking of ways to make money it’s a good idea to look at what people actually want and need; selling hand-made flutes is cool but no one wakes up in the morning with a burning desire to buy a new instrument.

But we all need to eat and drink and everyone spends money every day on filling their bellies and wetting their throats – why shouldn’t you get in on the action?

Where to Sell?

Why are people going to buy from you rather than a restaurant or bar?

Because you’re cheaper and you’re right in front of them. In the summertime people are hanging out in parks, beaches or strolling around in street festivals and you turn up with your drinks or food and they’ll be unable to resist.

The bars and cafes might not be happy about it if they see you, however, and it’s not technically legal in most countries to sell without a licence, so be as discreet as you can. One tactic might be to only carry as much as you can easily hide and go back to your stash point to refill. You can hide food in the bushes in parks, in a hired car, or in the kitchen of a helpful local.

Also make sure that you’re not treading on the toes of anyone who is already selling. The Pakistanis sell beer in the streets of Barcelona, for example, and wouldn’t deserve (or tolerate) any competition. We heard of one girl who was selling empanadas though who was friends with them and they told her whenever they saw the police coming.

Lastly, make sure you look clean and presentable – no one is going to want to buy sandwiches from someone whose beard is full of cheese crumbs and whose shirt hasn’t been washed in a month.


Selling Food

A lot here depends on whether you have access to a kitchen and whether you’re working alone or in a team. Ideally, you could have one person turning out the produce while you go to sell in the street, park or beach, depending on where people gather. You’re best off choosing something small that seems exotic to your customers, for example, empanadas. 

These can be savoury or sweet but the sweeter ones are cheaper for you to make and you’l probably sell more. You could make these using a small stove outside but it would he a hell of a lot easier in a kitchen. They’re light to carry and you could make 100 in the morning and then sell out in parks through the afternoon.

Another good option if you’re limited on what you can cook is sushi. You need to be able to find the seaweed, but otherwise the ingredients are super-cheap as you only use a little in each one. You definitely need a good cutting board and a sharp knife though.

The great thing with sushi is you can go crazy with the combinations and try things like sun-driec tomatoes, avocado, blue cheese, dates, nuts and pineapple. If you have a big selection then your customers might want to try one of each. Avoid fish as it’s expensive, messy and you might make everyone sick. Leave that to the pros.

If you don’t have any access to a kitchen or a stove then grab a water melon and a knife and sell slices.


Selling Drinks

If you’re making money at festivals there’s more money to be made selling alcohol. A bottle of tequila, a tray with some salt and slices of lemon and you have your own mini-bar selling shots. Another option is sangria:

If you have some way of getting hold of ice then you’ll sell a lot more, obviously and a good investment would be a cool box to keep your drinks refreshing.

Be bright and cheery, and you’ll be best friends with the drunk tourists in no time.