Young hawkers sell Western food at flat S$5 a plate, here’s how they make money

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There are also side dishes like cheese fries and breaded shrimps priced from $3 to $5.

Singapore News, Singapore Headlines

The number five is everywhere on $5 Western’s branding. It’s on the front and back of their bright orange t-shirts (which all the staff don), and plastered in bold on a huge signboard. Very enticing for the casual passer-by looking for something to eat.

But why $5? After all, if the hawkers had priced their food at $6 or $7, it would still be considered relatively average pricing in this inflationary climate. According to Jason, while “$6 or $7 is still quite cheap, [they] want to capture people’s attention with $5”, reasoning that it has a greater pull than other numbers.With the rising cost of food, it’s pretty remarkable that $5 Western is able to sustain their business with this pricing.

Instead, the young hawkers’ plan is to “earn based on volume”. By offering an attractively low price, they hope to “capture more customers based on the $5 price” and move more plates for profit. Yep, like the nice couple at Kovan stall$5 Western also sells “simple items”, so instead of offering premium meat and fish like beef, lamb or salmon, Jason and Jeffrey stick to lower-priced proteins like chicken and dory.

Jason says they are “quite pleased with the response” so far, and “should be able to continue running the stall at least in the short-term”. That said, he adds that they will still need to monitor their sales and food costs to see if their business is sustainable in the long run.

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