The vending industry is a multi-billion dollar industy. It all started back in 1880 in London, England, where the first vending machine was invented to sell postcards. After the turn of the century, our classical round gumball vending machines were invented, and then around 1940 the first drink vending machines were created. Since that time, vending businesses have exploded and as you know, you can buy anything from cigarettes, DVD’s, books, stamps, food, condoms and so much more, from a vending machine.
Everyone has used a Coke or Pepsi machine to quench their thirst and you are familiar with how they work. The same is true for a snack vending machine. However, not everyone is familiar with a “Combo Vending Machine”. This is a relatively new vending machine that has quickly become a favorite machine for vending professionals. It is a combination of snacks and drinks- all in the same machine, thus eliminating the need for two separate machines. As you can imagine, this opens up a huge market for small and medium sized businesses to have their favorite snacks and drinks where they couldn’t before because there wasn’t enough space, and the demand wasn’t there.
Most combo vending machines are actually two separate machines that are screwed or bolted together upon set-up. The bottom machine will house the drinks and is insulated and refrigerated. It will typically vend between 6-8 different drinks and can sell 12 oz. cans as well as bottles of various sizes. The snack machine typically sits on top of the drink machine and will have 2-3 rows of snacks.
Both machines will utilize the same control panel, dollar bill changer, coin dispenser, etc., so it makes the machine cheaper overall. Studies have shown that customers are more likely to purchase both a snack and beverage in the same vend when both complimenting items are sold in the same machine. Vending service providers love combo machines for one the simple fact that they are compact and easy to move. A typical combo vending machine will weigh approximately 500 lbs, which is very manageable with a utility or appliance dolly. A typical pop machine will weigh 800 lbs and can’t be broken into two pieces like the combo machines can. To move a pop machine will typically take a professional vending machine mover who has a box truck, liftgate, and special motorized dolly. This takes time and money.
I have really come to love the combo vending machines because they are so easy to move, can fit in tight locations, and can be located in smaller businesses which are much easier to find. Further, they are simple to operate, simple to program, and many can accept credit cards as well as cash. Popular manufacturers include Seaga, 1-800 Vending, Genesis, and USI. If you haven’t considered the combo snack soda vending machines, please check them out on our website and you will see just how profitable these machines really can be.