Have you got what It takes to open a takeaway?

take away
Written by Nigel Simpkins

Many of us dream about opening some form of eatery like a cafe or takeaway, but few have the drive to make this wish come true. Have you got what it takes to open a takeaway? Let’s see what’s involved.

Lots of Time

Opening any business is a lot of work, and a new one is going to suck up all the free time you have just now. If you think you can get away with this being a part-time business then you need to think again. Instead, you can expect to spend all of your time working here and making sure it is the best it can possibly be.

Expect late nights and early mornings. If you have never owned a takeaway before, there will need be a million things you need to pick up to ensure you can deliver the best possible results. Though it is going to be a long struggle, it will be more than worth it in the end.

The Perfect Place

Choosing a unit for a takeaway is incredibly important. Not only does it need to have all the facilities you could ever want, in terms of kitchen space and potentially a place to sit and eat, but it also needs to be located well.

You ideally want a takeaway to be somewhere that you can get a decent amount of foot traffic. If you are in a more residential area, your focus will probably be towards families opting for a Friday Night Takeaway or those who don’t want to cook for the evening. If you are looking for something more urban, you need to ensure that it has plenty of passers-by at all times. It could be great for people picking something up after work, or even after a night out.

Paperwork Done

Opening a business requires so much paperwork. Before you open the doors, you need to get registered, file all the right forms and choose a takeaway insurance plan. The latter is vital as everything else, so you can’t forget it. Takeaway insurance will protect you in the event that there is an accident on the property. It can’t be neglected.

As soon as you start to bring on members of a team, you are looking at further forms plus contracts and other important details. Even if your intentions are to spend most of your time in the kitchen, you can’t also neglect your paperwork.

The Menu

What type of food do you want to serve? There are so many cuisines that you could pull inspiration from. Classic UK takeaways are usually chippies or pizza parlours but there are lots of other options. 

You could pull from your culture and create some amazing dishes based around Asian, African, or European food. Take a look at what your competitors are offering. Is there a culinary niche that you are able to slot into? If you can find a style of cooking that no-one else is trying, it could mean that you get to bring some amazing new foods to a whole community. Experiment, and make sure you market well so you can be certain that everyone knows you have this incredible menu to try. You might quickly become the new favourite around town!

The Staff

Finding staff for a takeaway can be hard-going. They need to be committed to working odd hours – especially if you are trying to cater towards that post-club crowd. They also need to be ready to greet all types of customers with a smile and deliver the best customer service no matter what time of day or night it might be.

Takeaway food is always fast and always needs to be out as quickly as you can make it. Therefore, you also need to make sure that you are firing it out as regularly as you can. If you are able to find staff who can keep up with this high-intensity demand, you can be certain that you have found keepers. The right takeaway business has a shot at becoming the heart of its neighbourhood, and you have to make sure your business is ready to step in and take on this role.

No matter what type of food you want to serve, it is going to take hard work and some capital outlay to get your takeaway business off the ground. But if you do things right there’s the potential to turn your fast food startup into a runaway success.