Although the hot dog business appears to have saturated the Ghetto streets, for some it is their fancy toppings, uniqueness, and cleanliness that make them stand out of competition.
The grilled sausage sandwich in which the sausage is served in a partially sliced bun has become a popular street delicacy that does not need a high budget to start a business. The hotdogs are sold for as little as P15 and P10 each, and for one to make a decent profit they have to sell more.
While others decry low business due to the Covid-19 pandemic, 24-year-old Aobakwe Boniface Padipadi is a different story.
Padi Padi boasts that the Covid 19 pandemic has worked for him.
Having started selling hotdogs in the past three months in front of the Mangole-A-Leswe building, the young man is making so much profit that he does not even think of looking for a job.
“I sell approximately 800 hotdogs in a day, this is the busiest spot ever. That is why I even hired this young woman to help me because I never get a chance to sit down,” he says pointing to his assistant as she serves another happy customer.
“I am sure I make one’s salary in a day here. But the thing that attracts customers is how I treat them, the smile, the way I package my hot dogs and the general co-operation with my customers. Most of the people who buy here are those working in this building, Chinese shops, Jumbo Store and the passerby. If I could have started this business a long time ago I could be far,” said Aobakwe.
The youthful Molepolole man says he buys his stock at Choppies and it all gets finished as he opens for business at 8 am and closes at 6 pm.
His pricing varies depending on what the customer wants to top their hotdog with like if they want lettuce and cucumbers there is an extra 2 pula.
He also sells ginger drinks for P2.
He concluded the interview by stating that he wants to add papa to his menu so that others can have Russian sausage and pap.
Another happy hotdog trader, former goalkeeper- Oabile Elias (36), started selling hotdogs in the city center last December.
“I was working and I was not earning enough so I had to quit and start my business. I was a football player but unfortunately, I have nothing to show for it as there wasn’t much financial reward in my sporting career. I played for Flamingo Desportivo, Notwane, Moatakase, FC Palapye, and Tonota FC before hanging up my soccer boots in 2016,” he said.
Elias says with the hotdog business he is happy as he does not have many challenges with competition because he stands out when it comes to hygiene and customer etiquette.
He says he makes good business and has managed to retain the loyalty of foreign customers who frequently come into the country to order their stock.
Football referee, 28-year-old Solomon Toitoi started the hot-dog business last year for an alternative income when sporting activity was suspended due to Covid-19.
Having strategically situated his business in the middle of the taxi rank, Toitoi targets taxi drivers and their customers. “I can now continue paying my bills with the little I make. On a busy day, I sell 40 to 45 hotdogs, and on a slow day, I sell a minimum of 30 hotdogs. My hotdog sells for P17, 00 each. And this year it is doing pretty well as I have not sold anything less than 30 hotdogs a day,” he said.