Opening a kiosk at an intl airport?


New member
Nov 10, 2006
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I have the opportunity to submit a proposal for a coffee kiosk in our area's international airport. The airport retail mgr is currently building out a new coffee kiosk (location scouting done!) and is looking for potential women/minorty-owned businesses to fill it. The location seems a no-brainer to me. It is deadsmack in front of the escalators to baggage and from ticketing and also right in front of security checkpoint #1. This airport is sorely lacking in ANY coffee shop and won't allow franchises and/or big box retailers. Indies only!

Coffee has been my dream job forever it seems. However, I'm just a little freaked out by the entire process. Overwhelmed and unsure of where to even start! Am I overthinking this? Does this truly sound like a good opportunity?

Help! :-D

Comfy Place

New member
Jul 15, 2006
Bloomer, Wisconsin
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What an interesting opportunity that you have! At first glance, this may appear to be a dream location, but invariably there are potential downsides. Here are a few questions that came to me as I read your post:

1) What kind of traffic patterns does the airport have, and specifically does your area have?
2) What kind of travelers are coming through during the hours of operation of the airport? Business? Pleasure? Both?
3) What is the traveler count each day of the week, or better yet each hour of the day? Compare weekdays to weekends and see how they stack up.
4) Minimum operating hours - are you required to have any? Chances are that you will need to have the place operating 7 days a week, which means that you will most likely need to hire at least one person to work some of the hours that you will not be working.
5) Will you be able to have any of your own seating? Being a kiosk means no seating, unless the airport manager agrees to allow you some space for people to sit. What kind of seating will be allowed?
6) Has the airport ever had a coffee-kiosk in the past? If so, how long did it operate, why did it close, were there any problems, etc.? You need to know if this was tried before and failed because of no business, etc.

There are literally dozens of other questions, but these are a good start. With these answered, you can better judge what you need and what you want to get the business started. Also ask to look at the lease and read it through very carefully. Have a lawyer look over it if you want just to make sure that you don't have any potential "problem" areas that could hurt your business; exclusivity clauses would be great to have in your case. Drop me a note if you want to discuss other questions, and good luck!