Be a Successful Street Vendor

There are many important steps and resources that will help you become a successful street vendor.

The Los Angeles Public Library project Be a Successful Street Vendor was made possible by a grant from the American Library Association and Google. The L.A. Public Library worked with Community Power Collective, KLBRI, Immigrants Rising, Inclusive Action for the City, Public Counsel and local street vendors to build and collect useful resources to help vendors be successful.

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Overview and Permits

Short recorded info sessions to help you understand what you need to do to become a permitted vendor in the city of Los Angeles. Course topics include:

  • Introduction to Sidewalk Vending
  • Business Tax Registration Certificate (BTRC)
  • California Seller's Permit
  • Sidewalk & Park Vending Permit - Food & Merchandise
  • L.A. County Public Health Permit - Plan Check & Final Inspection

an outdoor vendor finalizing a sale with a customer

Cell-Ed Pathways

Two pathways feature micro lessons about business, community safety and Internet skills and have been specifically built for street vendors. Learn by using Cell-Ed on your phone.

  • Free
  • Three-minute courses
  • Learn at your own pace on the go, wherever you are
  • Learn in English, Spanish and ESL
  • Coaching by phone available

a smiling street vendor holding up the snacks she is selling

Additional Resources and Links

More helpful information for street vendors, including:

  • How to look up your business name
  • How to apply for an ITIN (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number)
  • What are the permits needed for a food or merchandise business
  • Free mental health support
  • Legal resources for victims
  • Additional and in-person assistance options

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Appointments for Small Business Help

Get help and assistance from the Los Angeles Public Library and L.A. City's BusinessSource Centers.

  • Small business telephone consultations
  • Assistance filling out the documents needed for state, county and city permits
  • Services are free and available in English and Spanish

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