One of the most common questions we get asked is, “How much does a vending machine cost?” This question can be tricky to answer effectively in just a few short sentences. Think of a vending machine like an automobile- there are many different shapes and sizes of cars, trucks, SUV’s etc. They can be new or used, and they can have all sorts of features on them. The same could be said with vending machines.
The cheapest vending machines can be found on Craigslist and will typically be priced anywhere from $150-$3000. Vending machines found on Craigslist can be desirable to someone who is on a tight budget and wants to see the machine before buying. However, these transactions can be very risky since you aren’t getting any warranty or long-term tech support when purchasing them on Craigslist. Further, the machine may be working when you first buy it, but it can break down the next day and you won’t have any support to help you out.
Reseller or Remanufacturer
The next step up would be to buy a quality used machine which has been refurbished and comes with a warranty and tech support. There are a number of Resellers or Remanufacturers of vending machines and The Discount Vending Store is counted in that pool. Used and Refurbished machines will typically sell for around $2000 – $4000 depending on their features. Most resellers of vending machines will offer a small warranty of 30-90 days.
The next best machines would be new machines which can be purchased from a trusted vending distributor who buys them from the manufacturer in bulk and sells them to vendors or businesses who will place them in their own business. The Discount Vending Store is also found in this category along with a half dozen other quality companies.
Unlike buying an automobile, buying a vending machine can be more difficult since there aren’t vending distributors in every city. This is a very niche market so finding quality new vending machines is much harder. You will typically need to look online and have the machine shipped to you with a freight carrier.
These new vending machines will cost anywhere from $3000 – $7000 depending on the size, features, customization, etc. For example, if you have additional payment options including credit card readers and mobile payments, this will cost a little extra. Some machines are refrigerated and some are not. One can have colorful graphics and another be plain black. A few are Made in America and others are imported from overseas.
Shipping will typically cost around $350 for standard delivery or up to $700 for white glove delivery service. They typically come with a one – two year warranty and phone support as well.
Business in a Box Franchise
The last option for purchasing vending machines is to purchase the machines from a Business in a Box style Franchise, run by companies like Healthy You, Naturals 2 Go, HUMAN, or Healthier 4 You.
These companies sell you a business package. You purchase a bundle of machines from them for around $10,000 per machine. You also help you set up your business and provide training, storage, placement services, tips on stocking, business essentials and other nice add-ons. If you are new to the vending business, this may sound like a nice way to go since these companies will hold your hand as you get started.
The down side is they are very expensive and it can take 2-3 years to pay off the machines if they don’t get you good locations. You are putting all your eggs into one company basket and hoping they will do as they say they will.
As you can see, there are many different ways to buy vending machines for your vending business. What’s right for you may not be right for the next guy. Each of the four different approaches can work if you are smart and do your due diligence. The cost of the machines is only one thing that you need to consider, but there are so many other important factors which will effect your success as a vending machine operator. Be sure to check out our blog for additional tips to help you get into the vending business the affordable way.