Being able to take take card payments for your food truck business is essential.  We live in an increasingly cashless society. And with the footfall at Food Truck Festivals sometimes being huge you need a way to take payments for all the Foodies you can.

There are many card payment providers out there. So it can be confusing to figure out which one is right for you.

Here’s two payment providers who are ideally suited to the needs of Food Truck Business Owners – SumUp and Square.

How to Take Card Payments for Your Food Truck Business

Why Take Card Payments in Your Food Truck Business

Accepting card payments incurs costs so is it really worth it? Here’s why choosing to take card payments may be good for you and your customers:

  1. People now carry less cash and are being actively encouraged to do so by banks with them beginning to add charges to cash withdrawals.  Being able to accept card payments is an expectation by buyers now and means you won’t miss out on a sale.
  2. Food festivals are full of impulse buyers. Drawn in by the smell of good food. The last thing you want is for your buyer to walk away to go to a cash point.  It gives them time to re think their purchase or go somewhere else!
  3. Taking a card payment, especially using contactless, is super quick. It saves you time and hassle of sorting out change. And reduces queuing times.
  4. No need to fill out cash takings forms to log your sales.  Todays payment processing automatically log your sales, which is ideal for tax time and some even have added stock management facilities included.

How To Take Card Payments in Your Food Truck Business

If you’re a food truck business owner then here are two of the market leading options available.  Both options fundamentally work the same but the costs work out slightly differently.

To take card payments in your food truck you need to order a portable card reader which allows you to take card payment by chip & pin and contactless.  Once this arrives, download the relevant app for your phone, set up your business details (including bank account so you can receive payments) and pair the device with your mobile phone. You’ll then be ready to take card payments!

The two popular UK card processing companies which best suit Food Truck Business Owners looking to get started quickly are Square and SumUp.

Here’s a comparison of the two:

Reader cost£19 + VAT£29 + VAT **
Transaction fee for card payments1.75%1.69%
Virtual terminal processingYesNo
Invoice PaymentsYesNo
Transaction fee for other payments2.50%n/a
Apple payYesYes
Email/Text ReceiptsYesYes
Monthly chargesNoneNone
Stock managementYesNo
Point of Sale SystemYesYes
Printed receipts (additional device required)YesYes
Funds transferDaily2 – 3 days
Ecommerce integrationYesNo
Learn MoreVisit the Square website Visit the SumUp website

** the Sumup card reader is reduced to £19 + VAT until the end of October 2018.  Click here to take advantage of the offer.

Square v Sumup

Both readers are proving popular in the UK right now.  SumUp is a great single device option if you are a small business looking just to collect credit card payments at a competitive price.

However if you are looking for a single system to integrate all your stock management, ecommerce payments and credit card collections then Square is a much more sophisticated offering.


Anita is a Chartered Accountant with over a decade of experience taking self employed business owners from financially confused to business savvy.
She is the creator of the ‘Go Self Employed’ website, which her corner on the internet where she makes self employment less terrifying.