How to Bring a Food Truck to Your Neighborhood

Have you ever wanted to bring a food truck to your neighborhood or apartment complex? Do you manage a building and are looking for resident event ideas?

This guide will show you how.

The best part is it’s super easy and you’ll get responses from multiple trucks with just one outreach.

A NOTE ABOUT COVID-19

With entire populations staying and working from home, access to food options is becoming more limited.

Food trucks are in a unique position to feed local communities. Their mobility allows them to come to your neighborhood or apartment complex and provide pick-up and delivery options in a safe manner.

We hope you’ll support small food businesses in your city, many of whom have been negatively impacted by Stay-at-Home orders.

Step 1: Sign Up Your Friends and Neighbors

The first step is to gather support from your neighbors and see if they are interested in a resident event at your complex. Will they order food when the truck shows up?

Don’t forget to consult with any associations that require approval to park a food truck on the street. Also, make sure there is enough room for the food truck to park (at least 25-30 feet).

If you live in an apartment building, please ask your building manager and get approval first. If the building manager approves, then spread the word to other residents to make sure they will buy food. Smartphone apps like Nextdoor are great for reaching neighbors you might not know personally.

Please keep in mind: If there isn’t a lot of support from neighbors, a food truck may lose money coming out to feed your apartment complex.

Step 2: How to Reach Out to Food Trucks

Go to Roaming Hunger’s Food Truck Catering page

Click the “Get Started” button and follow along with the GIF or instructions below…

Example of how to fill out a lead on Roaming Hunger

  1. On the “Who’s Paying?” slide select Attendees
  2. On “Event Details” enter something like “Lunch For Residents” (or Dinner); leave the “Event Website” blank
  3. For “Service Location” enter the address where you want the food truck to come to.
  4. For “Service Date” enter the date you and your neighbors would like to eat. Pick a 2 hour window.
  5. For “What’s the occasion?” select other and enter something like “neighborhood lunch”
  6. For “How many eaters?” enter the expected number of people that you expect will actually buy from the truck. Remember, if only 10 people are on board, the truck will probably not show up. Try to get 50-100 people on board.
  7. In “Final Details” you can write exactly what you’re looking for so the truck understands that this is a neighborhood asking for a food truck.

Step 3: Select Your Favorite Food Trucks

Once you submit the form, your request will be released to all local food trucks on Roaming Hunger (we have over 18,000 in the US and Canada).

Interested food trucks will respond to your request through Roaming Hunger, meaning that you won’t get a bunch of emails from multiple trucks. Your contact information will remain private.

Food trucks will have 1-2 business days to respond to your request. After 24-48 hours you will receive an email with a link to a proposal with all of your truck options.

You will get a proposal (like the one below) and be able to select which trucks you’d like to connect with. The trucks you select will then be able to see your contact information and reach out to you.

Roaming Hunger Proposal for Neighborhoods

Step 4: Finalize The Details With Your Trucks

Once you’re connected with the food trucks you’d like to come out, contact them and finalize the date and time. We suggest getting one truck at a time unless you’re sure your apartment building can support multiple trucks.

If you ever have any questions you can always contact Roaming Hunger Support and they will answer any questions you may have.

Step 5: Order and Enjoy!

Most trucks are currently taking safety precautions to protect themselves and the public from the spread of Coronavirus.

Once your truck selection is finalized, you will get an event page specific to you and your resident event (see below).

Since many trucks are not accepting cash, this page will have an order ahead link that you and your neighbors can click on to place orders and pay ahead for your meal.

Also please encourage your friends and neighbors to practice safe physical distancing practices if picking up an order.

Note: If Roaming Hunger is managing your resident event, we’ll create a flier and other assets (like graphics to share on social media) to help ensure your event is a success and boost participation in your apartment building.

Are Food Trucks Safe to Eat From?

To date, no local or state government has prohibited restaurants from preparing and selling food to the public. Measures have been put in place to limit people from congregating in groups. In some cities this has affected food trucks from vending to the public through window ordering.

But as mentioned above, food trucks have been using order ahead and delivery apps to prohibit lines from forming.

Buying hot food from a food truck is safe, and may be safer than restaurants because it’s a closed kitchen with usually only 2 or 3 people preparing meals.

Further research indicates that there is no evidence that Coronavirus is spread through food. For further info check out the CDC website: https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/newsletter/food-safety-and-Coronavirus.html

We also like this article from LiveScience.