Saturday, June 20, 2009

Wanna Buy a Vending Machine?

Who knew? Costco's latest e-mail promotion features business goods and services, including . . . vending machines. Not just one or two, but 15 different varieties. A basic 3-container gumball machine is $149.99 but the big snack and drink machine is a whopping $4,499.99. Snacks and drinks are extra, of course.

Costco isn't the only place to buy vending machines online. There's Vending Machines Unlimited, which has $139.00 double-container gumball machines all the way up hefty refrigerated bottle vending machines for $4,995.00. Visa or MasterCard accepted here, unlike Costco's cash or debit card or Amex card policy. Lots of other places are also selling or leasing machines.

And don't forget to look for the Energy Star label, which the EPA and DEA say will save up to $150 per year on a vending machine's energy costs.

Seriously, vending machines are increasingly sophisticated, from the kind that FreshDirect uses for its 4-minute meal entrees to the stylish ones that dispense perfume and cosmetics in malls and department stores. Vending machines going high tech--good idea.

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