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Rent a mobile ice cream truck

Nostalgia to order: A mobile ice cream truck

For millennials and older generations, the thought of ringing an ice cream truck bell in the summertime may well bring back fond childhood memories. One moment people were still playing enthusiastically in the garden or on the street, the next moment the ice cream man suddenly rang and all the children ran home to beg their parents for some small change for a delicious ice cream.

Nowadays, a mobile ice cream van has become a rarity in the vicinity and refreshment in summer is usually only possible by walking to the local ice cream parlor. This is not really flexible and can be done better! More and more people are wondering whether a mobile ice cream truck can be rented for a wedding, the next garden party, the upcoming children's birthday party or other events. The good news: Yes, you can! The bad news: A few things must be observed here in order not to violate legal regulations.

Whether it's an Italian ice cream truck or a retro ice cream truck: If you too think that a mobile ice cream truck would be the perfect surprise for your children or make you big at the next party, in this article you will find out from us what you need to know about renting and operating it have to consider.

Become an ice cream seller: How do you get a mobile ice cream truck and how much does it cost?

A mobile ice cream truck nearby is super practical, because you make yourself and your event completely independent of local conditions. What bigger surprise could there be for the employees of your company than being served a delicious ice cream at the end of the hiking trail during the company outing - eating ice cream in the middle of nowhere, thanks to your carefully ordered ice cream truck!

Buy or rent?

Basically you have two options: you can buy an ice cream truck or you can rent one. Unless you intend to sell ice cream on a permanent basis, renting is always a better option since you don't have any long-term commitments. After deciding whether to buy or rent, you have to make another decision: Do you want to operate the ice cream truck yourself or book the ice cream vendor at the same time?

Are you an ice cream seller or a customer?

If you opt for the all-round carefree package, there is good news: Although the costs are usually higher, you don't have to worry about legal regulations! Your ice cream truck rental company will take care of this for you, who will provide you with their ice cream truck including accessories and staff. On the other hand, if you want to lend a hand yourself, you will need to take a closer look at the next section on the regulations.

Cost of an ice cream truck

Unfortunately, no flat-rate price for an ice cream truck can be determined in terms of costs. Rather, many entrepreneurs will create individual offers for you that are tailored to your personal needs. Factors that play a role in pricing are:

  • One-off flat-rate costs, e.g. B. for delivery, assembly and dismantling
  • Size of the ice cream truck or capacity for ice cream flavors and ice cream trays
  • Personnel costs if you book service staff
  • Material costs for ice cream, accessories, serviettes etc.
  • deposit or security deposits
  • ♻️ sustainable
    🍦 with cocoa glaze and colorful sugar sprinkles
    ✅ sustainably packaged
    Original price
    Original price
    Current price
  • Which regulations and legal provisions do I have to observe?

    Now it gets a bit complicated, because having a mobile ice cream truck with permission is important so that there are no disappointments later! But don't worry, we've made some smart tips for you!

    restaurant or travel trade

    The operation of a mobile dining car or food truck can be classified according to two criteria. Either the activity counts as running a restaurant or an itinerant trade. If the sales stand is operated permanently at a fixed location (e.g. at a weekly market), the requirements for a restaurant are met. “Mobility”, on the other hand, turns the dining car into an itinerant trade. An itinerant trade card is required for this. This only has to be applied for once, is personal and non-transferrable. It applies to the entire federal territory. A restaurant permit is only necessary if alcohol is to be served, which is usually not the case with an ice cream van. By the way: If the street sale is operated in such a way that there is no possibility for guests to consume the food on the spot, no permit within the meaning of the Restaurant Act is required. The decisive criterion here is “consumption on the spot”. While a shopper often begins by eating their ice cream right at the ice cream truck, they will primarily consume it as they walk along.

    Driver's licenses and special use permits

    If you want to sell ice cream commercially, you can't just load your mobile ice cream truck and then drive through the streets ringing the bell. Although the conditions vary from city to city, an itinerant business license and an exemption permit under the Road Traffic Ordinance are usually required. In order to receive this, a certificate from the health department in accordance with Section 43 of the Infection Protection Act is required for the company owner and the employees. This regulates that those affected have been instructed in the commercial handling of food about all relevant hygiene and safety regulations. In addition, price tags stating the food on offer and the obligation to declare must be observed, for example to protect allergy sufferers. In addition, a driver's license to drive the ice cream truck is required. The size of the car is very important here, which decides whether a normal class B driver's license or a class C1 or C truck driver's license is required.

    Simplified procedure: Permission under the Restaurant Act

    If the ice cream stand is actually to be operated at different locations and does not have a fixed location, it is often referred to as street trading or “flying trade”, for which a special permit is required. If an ice cream van is regularly operated on a private site, at least a usage permit from the building authority is required. In the case of short-term sales activities, simplified approval can be given in the form of an approval under the Restaurant Act, which must be applied for at the responsible consumer protection office.

    sales tax obligations

    Anyone who sells goods in a mobile business must also keep a sales tax booklet based on the officially prescribed form and record sales and input taxes there. This also applies to small businesses who enter daily gross income in the sales tax book, stating the date. The sales tax booklet and all receipts must be kept for 10 years.

    hygiene regulations

    For the operation of catering establishments (regardless of whether they are fixed or mobile), compliance with so-called HACCP concepts is required. The control system stands for "Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points" and can be translated as "risk-based hazard analysis". It is intended to ensure quality assurance in all production processes in food processing sales. The IHK publishes particularly helpful information brochures for mobile snack bars and sales stands, in which operational, production and staff hygiene as well as self-monitoring measures are described.

    FAQ – Everything you always wanted to know about renting an ice cream truck!

    What kind of ice mobiles can I rent?

    The range is huge and there are no limits to your wishes. Depending on the provider, you can already get small ice bikes and ice cream showcases if the number of your guests is manageable or it is a small party. If more diligent ice cream eaters are expected, a hand truck with more storage space can be an option. For larger celebrations, such as company parties, Ice Cream Trucks are a good choice. Here you have enough space to ensure both sufficient quantities and sufficient variety in the offer so that there is the right refreshment for every guest.

    How much does it cost to rent a mobile ice cream truck?

    The price range here is very different and depends on how long you want to rent an ice cream truck, whether you order it with or without goods and whether you book additional service staff who will do the ice cream sales for you. Many providers will make you an individual offer, in which the duration of the rental, the required amount of ice, the desired staff and the delivery, assembly and dismantling are taken into account.

    Do I really need a trade license for my ice cream truck?

    If you operate the ice cream truck yourself and want to sell ice cream from it, you must observe the legal regulations that apply in your city. This includes proof of hygiene, a trade or itinerant trade license or a permit in accordance with the restaurant ordinance. If, on the other hand, you do not want to sell ice cream yourself, your ice cream truck provider will take care of these formalities for you. You book the ice cream truck, including equipment and service personnel, and do not have to do anything, while your provider is responsible for complying with all relevant regulations.

    What about allergies and intolerances of the guests?

    Depending on the provider, the range of ice cream can be very extensive. All dishes are subject to declaration, so that it is immediately clear which ice cream is suitable for vegan or lactose-intolerant guests. Many suppliers now also have gluten-free waffles on offer, so that there should be the right refreshment for every guest.

    Can I also get sustainable products for my ice cream truck?

    Sustainability is very important to you, otherwise you would not have ended up at Wisefood! You want your guests to eat ice cream without a guilty conscience and not produce unnecessary waste. When ordering and selecting the range, pay attention to edible waffle cups and ice cream spoons. If you only book an ice cream truck without accessories, you can of course also get all the right accessories such as sundaes, spoons and bowls in our Wisefood online shop!

    Is it easier in some cities or states than in others?

    In fact, the question cannot be answered in general. The legal situation for the operation of mobile sales stands is very confusing and depends on many factors. As a rule, it is therefore a good idea if you contact the consumer protection office in your own city in good time and get an initial overview of the requirements and permits required for operating a mobile sales vehicle on site. It only looks bad for Munich: Here the city does not allow any commercial trade on public land for fear of its cityscape.
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