Boksburg coffee entrepreneur scores on chilly voting morning

2016-08-03 16:10
Amanda Odendaal's pop up coffee trailer in Boksburg had sold almost 80 cups of coffee by 8:00 on election day. (Carien du Plessis)

Boksburg - By a very chilly 08:00 Amanda Odendaal in her Coffee Café trailer had already sold close to 80 cups of coffee to freezing voters lined up outside Freewood Park Primary School voting station on Wednesday.

Many residents came early and stood in the near-freezing temperatures from well before 7am, which meant that when the polling station finally opened almost 15 minutes late, they were cheering with relief.

Odendaal, who wore a scarf in the colours of the South African flag, said voting day was the launch of her pop-up coffee shop, which sells everything from hot chocolate (R25 for a large one) to ice coffee (R20) to rooibos cappuccinos (R25).

"I saw these people selling a lot of coffee at a motoring event a while ago, and decided I want to do it too," said Odendaal, who is hanging on to her job as financial manager for now.“It took me six months to get everything together and set this up,” she said.

The coffee menu at Odendaal's trailer in Boksburg (Carien du Plessis)

Extra income stream

The mobile coffee café is a franchise she bought into as an extra income stream.

News24 bought one of the cappuccinos and can report that the foamy coffee alleviated a bit of the chill of the winter’s morning, even though it did not manage to keep the cold completely at bay.

She said she got permission from the residents in the flats opposite the school to run a generator. “We decided to put up shop here because we know the people who live here, so it was easy,” she said.

During the interview some customers came by, saying they had thought about doing something similar for voting day, but didn’t get around to it. 

Odendaal said it was warm inside the trailer, and the gusts forecast for the Ekurhuleni Metro were not expected to disrupt their business too much.

- Find everything you need to know about the 2016 Local Government Elections at our News24 Elections site, including the latest news and detailed, interactive maps for how South Africa has voted over the past 3 elections, or download the app for iOS and Android.

Read more on: johannesburg  |  local elections 2016