Pros And Cons Of Starting An ATM Business {Costs Too}

In the modern era, consumers have all kinds of ways of paying for things. There is Cash App, Paypal, cryptocurrencies and several other ways to exchange money these days. So, you might be wondering if starting an ATM machine business is still worth it. The truth of the matter is that in 2022, running an ATM business is still very profitable. In fact, the industry is expected to grow steadily.

Some of the best things about starting an ATM business is the fact that it’s a rewarding experience that has very high customer retention rates. In the ATM business, you get to choose who you work with while gaining critical business experience. You have a truly unlimited income potential and you get great exercise when working on and refilling your machines with cash. Being your own boss is the biggest of starting any business, and the ATM business is generally stable and predictable. Starting an ATM business is easy, and the hours you put into the business often have a higher-than-average return compared to working for someone else.

It’s not all sunshine and rainbows, though. When running an ATM business, you aren’t going to have a consistent work schedule, and if you are in business for yourself, you aren’t going to be getting any benefits like health insurance and sick leave. Taxes will always cost you more if you are in business for yourself and there is no specific time where you can rely on a paycheck. In the ATM business, the work can get repetitive and boring, and starting any business takes time and effort that can quickly become overwhelming. Also, any business where you have to carry around thousands of dollars in cash is at least somewhat risky.

In this article, we will go over the pros and cons of running an ATM business. We will also tell you a little more about the industry and what to expect as far as start up costs.

Thing To Consider When Opening An ATM Business

When running an ATM business, you are the one that has to pay for the ATM. Profit is made on the fees. Sometimes, it can take a while before your ATM machine has paid for itself. There are three parties involved in an ATM business. The ATM owner, the store owner, and the payment processor.

It’s important to consider that all three parties share the ATM processing fee. Also, an ATM processor may have network access fees for each transaction. ATM fees range from $1 to $8 per transaction, depending on where the ATM is located. Generally speaking, store owners get about 50 cents per transaction.

The first thing to consider when starting an ATM business is, of course, the machine’s intended location. One thing that people often fail to think about when considering the pros and cons of an ATM business is the fact that the owner of the ATM is responsible for loading it with cash. In most cases, ATM businesses load cash into their machines every day.

Is Starting An ATM Business Worth It In 2022?

Yes. The ATM business is still doing very well. In fact, the ATM industry was worth over 20 billion dollars as recently as 2019. Most analysts tend to agree that the ATM industry will see no less than a 5% growth for the next 5 years.

These days, an ATM isn’t simply a cash dispenser. Now, they have more capabilities and features such as depositing and the ability to bill pays.

How Much Does It Cost To Start An ATM Business?

That depends on how many machines you plan to operate. The start-up costs associated with starting an ATM business, it ranges from $2,000 to $8,000 per machine. Generally speaking, the ATMs themselves cost between $2,000 to $3,000. Used ATMs typically cost $1,000 to $1,900, and installation fees range from $300 to $400 per ATM.

One thing that most people often fail to consider is the fact that, as an ATM machine owner, you also have to load the machine with cash. ATM machines can hold as much as $100,000 dollars but they seldom do. Most machines, however, are expected to have about $10,000 dollars worth of cash in them at any given moment.

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Owning An ATM Business?

As with all business ventures, there are advantages and disadvantages. The pros and cons of an ATM business are generally pretty straightforward and easy to understand.

The Pros Of Running An ATM Business

Starting Any Business Is Rewarding

Specifically, an ATM business solves a problem for your customer and provides convenience when cash is needed.

ATM Businesses Have Very High Customer Retention Rates

People get comfortable and familiar with machines and devices as much as they do with people. So, once a customer uses your ATM, chances are they will return to it several more times.

You Choose Who You Work With

In an ATM business, the ATM machine owner chooses where to put their ATM and what payment processor it uses. This level of freedom is not something that is easy to find in other businesses.

Gain Critical Business Experience

The ATM business requires building relationships with store owners and payment processors. These are often good people to know. Working with your new business connections will provide you with crucial experience that will benefit you long term.

Unlimited Income

One of the best pros about running an ATM business is the fact that there is no limit to how much money you can make. The more connections you make and the more machines you buy and set up, the more business you can do.

It’s Great Exercise

Most new business owners cannot afford employees, and its no different for running an ATM business. That means that you will be walking to machine after machine. You will be loading cash and receipt paper, and performing regular maintenance on your machines. This type of freedom of movement is often not found in other industries and it can have a major positive impact on your health.

Be Your Own Boss

Just like with any business, when you start your own ATM business, you are the shot caller. The decisions are all up to you and no one can make you do anything you don’t want to. This benefit alone is one of the most important.

Consistent Income

Once people start using your ATM machines, they generally don’t stop. This makes an ATM business’s income stream predictable and consistent. ATM machines are one of the easiest ways to create a consistent and reliable income.

The ATM Business Is Easy

Owning and operating an ATM business is easy. It’s a very simple business model that is easy for most people to understand. This makes starting an ATM business extremely approachable.

Cash Is Still In Demand

In fact, the demand for ATMs is projected to increase by 5% for at least the next 5 years. This makes investing in an ATM business a relatively safe bet.


High Hourly Equivalent Pay

As they say, when you run your own business you get to pick which 22 hours of the day you spend working. A lot of time goes into operating a business, but it’s worth it. With that being said, the hourly pay rate equivalent is relatively high for an independent ATM business. This means you are going to get paid well for all that walking you are going to have to do.

The Cons Of Running An ATM Business

Inconsistent Work Schedule

While the income provided by an ATM business is relatively consistent, the amount of work you will have to do to run the ATM business is not. One of the major cons of an ATM business is the fact that when an ATM is not working or is out of cash, its not going to make any more money until you physically go out there and either fix the machine or load it with more cash.

No Benefits

Just like starting any other small business, an independent ATM owner is responsible for finding their own health insurance. This can increase the cost of doing business because small companies don’t have access to the same pricing as large companies do.


An ATM business, like any business, has to pay taxes. As the ATM business owner, you are responsible for allocating and saving the correct amount of money for your taxes. This can be complicated if you have never done it before.

No Promised Paychecks

While the income from owning an ATM business is known to be consistent and predictable, its still based on commission and traffic. After a while, you will learn your slow times and will also learn how to prepare for them.

Repetitive Work

When running an ATM business, you are going to have to do the same few tasks at the same few locations over and over again. Like with anything else, this can get old. It really depends on the personality type though, as some people would consider this a pro.

Starting A Business Takes Time

When starting an ATM business, handling all the responsibilities, decisions, and work is going to be extremely time consuming. This will be true as long as you own the business, but it will be especially pronounced in the beginning. This is because like with any business, it takes a lot of time and effort to get an ATM business up and running.

Equipment Breakdowns Cost Money

ATMs are complicated machines. Just like any other machine with moving parts, ATMs will break down from time to time over the years. Its crucial to prepare for the extra time and money its going to take when these breakdowns inevitably happen.

Time Spent In Traffic

As an ATM business owner, you have to drive around to all your ATMs on a regular basis. This means you will pretty much always be behind the wheel. And remember, you don’t choose when a machine breaks down or needs reloading and ATMs are often located in high traffic areas. So that means you will more than likely be spending the majority of your commute in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Carrying Lots Of Cash Can Be Risky

As an ATM business owner, you are going to have lots of cash on you all the time. You will also take predictable paths. So, it’s crucial to take this into consideration and make sure no one follows you


Even with PayPal, Cash App, cryptocurrencies, and other ways to pay now commonly available, cash is still king. As with any other business, starting an ATM business has its own set of pros and cons that need to be considered before taking on such a project.

Some of the most significant pros of running an ATM business are the rewarding feeling you get and the fact that your customers keep coming back. Being able to choose your clients and where you do business is another huge pro in the ATM industry. Because there is no limit on how many machines you can operate, there is truly unlimited income potential. Anyone going into business for themselves no longer has to have a boss, which is a huge plus. The ATM business is a low-risk industry that is reliable and predictable. Compared to other businesses, it’s easy to start an ATM business.

 Knowing all that makes going into the ATM business seem like a no brainer, doesn’t it. Well, it’s important to remember that there are also some things to take into consideration before taking the plunge.

 The inconsistent work schedule that comes along with running an ATM business can be a deal-breaker for some people. Also, its important to remember that if you are working for yourself, you also have to provide yourself will health insurance and you won’t be getting paid vacation time. Taxes will be your responsibility and if you don’t do them right you could get into some serious trouble. Some people find the repetitive work of running an ATM business to be boring and monotonous. Finally, depending on the area that your machines service, you could be labelled as a target that carries a lot of cash.

We hope this article helped you lean the pros and cons of ATM businesses. Thanks for reading!

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