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Drive thru vs sit in

This is a discussion on Drive thru vs sit in within the Coffee Shops, Espresso Bars & Cafes forums, part of the Coffee Addicts category; On average, who probably makes more in a day? A drive-thru cafe, or the sit in cafe?...

  1. #1
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    Drive thru vs sit in

    On average, who probably makes more in a day? A drive-thru cafe, or the sit in cafe?

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  3. #2
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    Based off of The cafe that I worked for and what I am doing now I would say more tips at drive thru but more money spent at cafe. Cafe's typically charge more for their product then a drive thru because I think drive thru's have to be more competitive.

  4. #3
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    What's the relevance of the question?
    John Piquet
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  5. #4
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    John, I would venture to say that the relevance that Wrestingking is trying to determine is which would be the best bang for the buck, a Drive Thru or a Sit Down. I can relate to this question. Does one spend the extra money to venture into a sit down coffee shop or focus on a drive thru location which the investment might not be as much. I too am wondering this. I am working through two business plans that will help me think of all the differences between the two. I think that it's not only costs are here, but what one would envision their place to be. You can have a sit down and have a drive thru as well. First I would ask, do you have a location picked out?
    Last edited by JerryB; 01-20-2013 at 08:20 PM.

  6. #5
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    I totally agree with CSC. I will say, sit in coffee house will have bigger average sale per ticket but it comes with higher investment tag. More maintenance and more headaches but will gross much more.... Drive thru will be much cheaper to start and will get good amount of customer. Also, if you are busy, you won't have hard time finding good help since they will make great money because of higher tip. There are pros and cons to both type of business.

  7. #6
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    Jerry,

    The question, as posed, is a very poor way of looking at, or deciding to, go one way or the other.

    The fastest way to a poor outcome is to base a long-term business on a short-term answer. The decision should solely be based on what is the best fit for you, not financially, but which is the better fit. ??

    There is a very important psychology that goes into any entrepreneurial endeavor, and the psychology that you enter each particular endeavor with will ultimately predict how decisions will be made, from seemingly minor ones to major ones. If psychology and path are incongruous, poor decisions will always be made. I've seen it time after time after time. And if the psychology, frame of reference -- what have you, corresponds with the center, the ideals, the soul of said project, then better, and more often than not "spot on" decisions will be made, and this will greatly determine the success or failure of that venture.

    So if one's personality and nature lead them towards a drive-thru, it would be foolish to pursue a sit down if their heart's not in it, and the same would go for the other way around. Unless you are doing it purely as an investment, and then it's just an exercise in numbers.

    Sometimes patience is the right decision. It makes all those seemingly difficult decisions much easier.
    Last edited by John P; 01-23-2013 at 06:19 PM. Reason: clarity
    John Piquet
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  8. #7
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    As John P has stated alot of factors come into play. I know of a 500 sq ft double drive thru with walk up that does on average 2500-3000 cups of coffee a day (mostly drip), and the rent is so low and the staff is low and the amount of equipment is low cost so the profit is ASTOUNDING!!!!! Up here in Canada most national (Tim Horton's Starbucks, Second Cup,etc) will have a drive thru and I would venture to say that all new stores have a drive thru attached to their stores. Most non national stores don't have drive thrus because they can't get the prime locations that would allow a drive thru are unavailable because the nationals take them. I would think that all factors being the same a drive thru attached to a shop would be ideal with a drive tru being the next best. You can easily do 30-40 cars an hour in a single drive thru and I think you would have a great deal of trouble doing that kind of number in a sit down only location. Then again it all depends on what you are striving for in a business.
    Brian

  9. #8
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    I think one that utilizes both would make the most. Also depends on the location. In a very clustered city where everyone walks everywhere like New York I'd say a sit in would be sufficient. In a city that is more scattered where everyone drives to work, a drive-thru would work better. Lots of factors to consider to be able to give a good answer.

  10. #9
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    It would be the best of both worlds to have a cafe that has a drive thru as well as a sit-in area.

    I think the people who just walk in, buy their coffee, and go out the door would probably use a drive through if you had one. I would imagine it's the experience of most cafes that have seating. Most of the people just get their coffee and go anyway.

    Rose

 

 

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