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John white

I stopped running my routes

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For the time being I've just stopped running my route For fear of being ask to take out my machines. I have 4 Grocery stores..a salvage yard..3 fire departments. They are very friendly but I don't want to face the situation so I'm just gonna let them sit for a while. Like 2 months. Any suggestions?

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Posted (edited)
14 hours ago, John white said:

For the time being I've just stopped running my route For fear of being ask to take out my machines. I have 4 Grocery stores..a salvage yard..3 fire departments. They are very friendly but I don't want to face the situation so I'm just gonna let them sit for a while. Like 2 months. Any suggestions?

i haven’t collected from any of my gumball machines in well over a month. of course it’s tempting, but i’m in massachusetts, one of the hardest hit states, and like you, i’m afraid some will have me remove it if i show up. i’ve actually had several locations call me to remove it due to the virus. i plan on heading back out in a couple weeks depending on if things are getting a lot better.

Edited by jay22

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On 4/20/2020 at 11:42 PM, John white said:

For the time being I've just stopped running my route For fear of being ask to take out my machines. I have 4 Grocery stores..a salvage yard..3 fire departments. They are very friendly but I don't want to face the situation so I'm just gonna let them sit for a while. Like 2 months. Any suggestions?

The concern about being asked to remove your equipment is a valid one as people tend to freak out in times like this. The tough part about this situation is there is no rock solid rebuttal if someone asks you to pull the machine due to health concerns. Even though current data seems to indicate that the virus doesn't seem to fare well on food, which is great news, it's the bulk vending delivery method (common surface) that concerns people. One thing that may help is to be vigilante when it comes to keeping equipment as hygienic as possible and I think that will be paramount going forward. I know that I will have some locations that will remain strong through this ordeal but fear about common surface contamination maybe too much for alot of the public to overcome in the short term. I am definitely going to wear a mask and gloves initially when I go back out for my safety and for the safety of my customers. It may also help in location retention. Like Jay I haven't run for over a month now. Once the "stay at home order" is lifted and all businesses are able to open back up I will roll again and see what the bulk vending world looks like. Generally I try to locate at least once a month (10-15 machines) but I am going to focus solely on servicing/retaining existing locations for the time being. Looking ahead there is a concern that this thing could come in waves and potentially be pretty nasty this fall so more undo challenges may lay ahead. Let's hope that prediction is wrong.

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I've ran my route once in the past 5 weeks (usually I do twice a week).  This thing is hurting everyone!!! :( 

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I have also stopped servicing the route, had one location call to pickup candy gum machines, it was a kidney clinic that had patients who's health was in jeapordy & didn't want our machines anymore. Iam thinking the majority will keep us in their locations. Definetly will be wear gloves & cleaning when servicing. Does anyone think their will be a flood of used machines for sale out their after this? I noticed the used machine market was getting grabbed up (the good machines Oak, Northwestern,Beaver) before the virus.

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4 minutes ago, Vendin it said:

I have also stopped servicing the route, had one location call to pickup candy gum machines, it was a kidney clinic that had patients who's health was in jeapordy & didn't want our machines anymore. Iam thinking the majority will keep us in their locations. Definetly will be wear gloves & cleaning when servicing. Does anyone think their will be a flood of used machines for sale out their after this? I noticed the used machine market was getting grabbed up (the good machines Oak, Northwestern,Beaver) before the virus.

I guess we have to see what the general attitude is on the streets towards bulk vending. If tons of locations show people the door and locating becomes more difficult I could definitely see people trying to sell equipment. I think it will also depend on what area of the country you are in and how bad of an impact the virus has had there.   

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other than a few soda machines i have not serviced either.

I think this industry has changed  now

it will be different moving forward !!

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The business has been slowing. My laundromats are deemed essential businesses. I did service one last week. I was able to roll it into a back room to service it, as vending is classified as a non essential business in my state. The collection was decent, noticed the one candy head (Bonz) was significantly off. I may try another stop or two next week. I don’t like the idea of an empty or very low head out there during these trying economic times.  I already had a four way rack disappear at another laundromat a few weeks ago. 

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2 hours ago, Gumball prince said:

The business has been slowing. My laundromats are deemed essential businesses. I did service one last week. I was able to roll it into a back room to service it, as vending is classified as a non essential business in my state. The collection was decent, noticed the one candy head (Bonz) was significantly off. I may try another stop or two next week. I don’t like the idea of an empty or very low head out there during these trying economic times.  I already had a four way rack disappear at another laundromat a few weeks ago. 

did you ask the manager about the rack? maybe they put it in the back room?

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9 hours ago, jay22 said:

did you ask the manager about the rack? maybe they put it in the back room?

The owner called me and asked if I removed the rack. He told me he would review the video, but I’m not holding my breath. 

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During the last week or so I've serviced some places that have been deemed essential and have remained open throughout this ordeal. Many more places have been allowed to open this week but alot of them have specific rules for entry so I am being selective as I service trying to hit places when they aren't as busy. Unfortunately selective servicing is not a productive way to run a route but the last thing I want to do is give a business owner, who is already on edge, a reason to have me pull my equipment. I have been wearing a mask and gloves as well as following a vigorous cleaning regiment at each stop. So far I have lost only two locations to what I suspect is concern about the virus (they gave other nonsensical reasons) but I'm sure there will be more that jump ship. I am also concerned that some of my small business accounts may never reopen. Only time will tell. Going forward I will just continue to expand servicing gradually as places continue to reopen. As we all know bulk vending was already facing alot of challenges before this virus came on the scene so I think it is safe to say this ain't gonna help the situation. I do believe bulk vending will survive but to what extent is the question. The next 6 to 12 months will be interesting.

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2 hours ago, gumball guy said:

During the last week or so I've serviced some places that have been deemed essential and have remained open throughout this ordeal. Many more places have been allowed to open this week but alot of them have specific rules for entry so I am being selective as I service trying to hit places when they aren't as busy. Unfortunately selective servicing is not a productive way to run a route but the last thing I want to do is give a business owner, who is already on edge, a reason to have me pull my equipment. I have been wearing a mask and gloves as well as following a vigorous cleaning regiment at each stop. So far I have lost only two locations to what I suspect is concern about the virus (they gave other nonsensical reasons) but I'm sure there will be more that jump ship. I am also concerned that some of my small business accounts may never reopen. Only time will tell. Going forward I will just continue to expand servicing gradually as places continue to reopen. As we all know bulk vending was already facing alot of challenges before this virus came on the scene so I think it is safe to say this ain't gonna help the situation. I do believe bulk vending will survive but to what extent is the question. The next 6 to 12 months will be interesting.

Have you experienced a drop in sales at the places you were able to service?

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2 hours ago, Gumball prince said:

Have you experienced a drop in sales at the places you were able to service?

Since bulk vending service cycles are 2-3 months in length It will take a while to get a true picture of where sales are compared to last year. Some of the locations (that were open during the lock down) that I have been going to were at the end of their service cycle in March (when I stopped running) so the sales figures appear to be a bit inflated due to the elongated service cycle. Other ones that are just opening back up show the normal sales volume for the January thru March service cycle. The next 6 months will yield alot more info as to how bad this virus has affected sales.

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I can confirm a lot of operators are dropping their equipment. My machines all came from a local school, which is now closed. I believe that operator has left the business entirely, as I was also offered old stock, and as many as 8 other machines.

It's a concerning time to get in the business, but at my work there's a pinball machine that's still hoppin'.

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in massachusetts, things are opening up VERY slowly. i haven’t serviced since mid march, as all my locations are customer driven. most of them are still closed or only doing takeout/curbside(essentially the same as closed as far as my machines are concerned). i will head back out there in a few weeks when dine in pizza shops begin to resume(that makes up a big chunk of my locations). a couple  of my best locations have permanently closed over the past few weeks, and am dreading there are more to come, and others that will show me the door. 

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all my indoor playgrounds are permanently closing... those are some of the best locations. this really sucks 

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I have serviced a couple laundromats this week and last.  Did machine wipe downs prior to even opening.  Some were empty and some were only half which was less than expected.  The gum/hard candy products sold better than the toys which was a bit surprising.  Restaurants can open for 50% capacity tomorrow.  Not sure if vendors count in that number or not.  May attempt to check some next week that were due to be checked when things locked down.   Possibly be better to wait another week to allow people to settle into the newest rules routine.  Hard to know what others perceptions are of bulk vending.   

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21 minutes ago, ginger vend said:

I have serviced a couple laundromats this week and last.  Did machine wipe downs prior to even opening.  Some were empty and some were only half which was less than expected.  The gum/hard candy products sold better than the toys which was a bit surprising.  Restaurants can open for 50% capacity tomorrow.  Not sure if vendors count in that number or not.  May attempt to check some next week that were due to be checked when things locked down.   Possibly be better to wait another week to allow people to settle into the newest rules routine.  Hard to know what others perceptions are of bulk vending.   

what state are you in?

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Posted (edited)

i’m losing so many locations between stores closing, and being asked to remove machines. feel bad, man. i can’t go to the gym(key for sanity, but everything still closed in MA), and can’t really do anything, period, so all i have is time to think , and it’s depressing.  i know it’s selfish to be too down considering everyone whose in the hospital right now but i can’t help it. anyone else have it really tough right now?

Edited by jay22

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6 hours ago, jay22 said:

i’m losing so many locations between stores closing, and being asked to remove machines. feel bad, man. i can’t go to the gym(key for sanity, but everything still closed in MA), and can’t really do anything, period, so all i have is time to think , and it’s depressing.  i know it’s selfish to be too down considering everyone whose in the hospital right now but i can’t help it. anyone else have it really tough right now?

Keep your chin up. These are indeed tough times for so many of us but things will improve eventually. I started hitting locations about three weeks ago focusing on places that were essential and open throughout the shutdown. I was surprised at how well many of them did and that was encouraging. I have lost about 10 locations and expect to lose more as things continue to open up. Five of those locations were from the same bank chain who implemented a no vending policy due to Covid 19 but the truth is none of them were great locations for me. People are all over the board on this thing. I wear a mask into every account but I am stunned by how many people are not wearing them. Some people are afraid of this thing and others could care less so when you walk into a place you really don't know what to expect. Some places are still leery about letting people in (manufacturing, transit, hair salons, etc... .) so I don't push it. If there is a sign on the door that appears to be prohibitive about people coming in I just leave the place alone and will service it later on down the road. The way I see it if the pandemic starts to lose steam over the next few months then we maybe able to work through this mess. It is encouraging to see some reports recently that they don't believe this thing is as transmissible off of common surfaces as once thought but that could change tomorrow. As I've said before, the next 6-12 months will be interesting and will give us a more definitive answer as to what the future holds for alot of businesses including bulk vending. I really believe bulk vending will survive this but finding locations will understandably become more challenging. 

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On 5/23/2020 at 2:09 PM, jay22 said:

i’m losing so many locations between stores closing, and being asked to remove machines. feel bad, man. i can’t go to the gym(key for sanity, but everything still closed in MA), and can’t really do anything, period, so all i have is time to think , and it’s depressing.  i know it’s selfish to be too down considering everyone whose in the hospital right now but i can’t help it. anyone else have it really tough right now?


I’m getting DESTROYED right now too man :(

I serviced some accounts last week and had a horrible time. One account met me at the door to have me remove my machine. A movie theater that I have made me unplug my machines and turn them backwards. (Keymaster, pirates chest, and a cotton candy machine all sitting unplugged in the middle of summer, those are like my top 3 machines during peak earning time)
 

3 other places now have “no vending machines due to covid” policies so I lost those accounts. (They did say I could return when things get back to normal at least)
 

I lost all of my jiffy lube accounts (4 in total). 

i have so many machines at home right now it’s insane. I’m running out of places to put them all (storage unit is almost full, garage has machines, basement has machines) and I can’t really go out locating right now :(

I’m thankful I have the most important things of course (family and I are healthy) but I spent 8 years building my route and I’ve lost almost half of it in 2 months. I’ve gone from 108 locations to 62. This just sucks :(

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