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Should I start a bouncy castle business?

A key reason why people choose to start a bouncy castle business is the desire to work for themselves - and this is a great reason! But there are lots of other things to think about.

Some of the reasons why you might want to get involved in inflatable and party equipment hire include:

Controlling your investments

  • Initial start-up costs don’t need to spiral out of control when you set up a bouncy castle hire company. Many bigger businesses started off with just one inflatable and with very limited advertising, but through careful investment and clever promotion, managed to increase their stock and their range over a period of months and years.

Controllable fees

  • You’ll have to pay for cleaning, maintenance, transport and insurance, and you’ll probably also want to pay for a professional website and booking system and some paid advertising.

Good fun

  • Spending your time outdoors, helping people throw parties and watching the delight of children as they play on your equipment is its own reward.Fast work​Setting up and taking down a bouncy castle can take as little as five minutes when you’re experienced. You simply have to travel to the customer and blow up your equipment to earn your money.

Control over your own hours

  • Many bouncy castle companies are run by sole traders. Although most sole traders will try to work the hours their customers ask for, there’s nothing preventing them from taking days or weeks off as a holiday, or refusing to work before 11am or after 5pm – except for the need to pay bills!

However, there are some drawbacks that are worth considering - the industry might not be as easy as you think it might be!

Cleaning inflatables

  • Cleaning inflatables is a challenging task! You will need to keep your stock well-maintained, and this will involve cleaning items before or after hires and drying them out to avoid mould and mildew growth. Despite your best efforts, you will undoubtedly have to deal with mess such as mud, food and face-paints.

Maintaining inflatables

  • Maintaining your inflatables is also of key importance. You may have health and safety laws you are legally obliged to follow that will call for your products to be maintained and used in a particular way - and while you might be able to patch up some small problems yourself, you will need to budget for professional repairs.

Time investment

  • You will need someone to answer your phones, take booking details, take your castles to their locations, set them up, take them down, and everything else. You might even find that you've got to deal with customers who want to barter with you, or ask technical questions. While an online booking system can reduce this workload, you'll still find yourself working full weeks, overtime, and out of hours.

Money investment

  • You might be tempted by the offers of cheap inflatables, but you get what you pay for, and if a price seems too good to be true, it probably is! If you want to invest in high-quality stock - which is highly recommended - it may take a while to pay off your initial investment and the cost of deliveries and hiring. It's a good idea to get a bit of money in the bank first!

Manual Work

  • There's a lot of manual work which can be quite exhausting. Taking bouncy castles, inflatables and all their associated equipment out of vans, up and down steps, and into gardens and halls can be hard work - and the less said about rolling up inflatables, the better!

Make sure you do your research and invest in the best if you want to succeed. Shortcuts might seem like they'll save time and money, but they won't give you the solid foundations you need!

Indoors on Hard Surface
Outdoors on Grass
Outdoors on Hard Surface