Talk to Your Venue
Every venue's rules differ, and will sometimes change, so it's important to make sure that you have the all-clear from your venue before making deposits with a vendor, even if you've worked with that venue before. They may have a list of preferred vendors that they work with, or they may not allow food trucks. Talking to your venue also will allow you to plan where the best location for your food truck will be at the venue - is it best suited to the parking lot? Can you pull up to a patio or alongside a ballroom? Trucks need a space of at least 10-feet in width by approximately 30-feet in length, on flat ground, with an area for customers to stand while ordering. Talking to the venue is the best way to make these plans.
A few other points to note for planning where your food truck will be: Food truck operators need access to a restroom (within 500 feet), when serving for longer than 1 hour, per Washington state food code and King county health permit requirements. Food trucks are also required to have their own trash receptacle.
Catering or Cash?
Are you planning on providing food for your guests, or simply having a food truck available for guests to purchase their own food? Knowing this will help when it comes time to book your truck. The average food truck needs a sales minimum of ($800-$1,000), and/or at least 60-customers per 3-4 hr. service, just to cover their time and costs. This expense minimum may vary depending on the cuisine type and the location of service. Some food trucks may require you to place a deposit for a minimum amount to ensure their costs are covered, depending on the details of your event. Many food trucks have recently experienced unprecedented shortages of food, supplies, equipment, and qualified staff. And, costs to operate a food truck have skyrocketed, so please keep that in mind when negotiating with these hard-working small business owners.