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Food Truck and Sidewalk Vending

On March 21, 2019, a new city ordinance went into effect that regulates food trucks and sidewalk vendors. Mobile vendors should review Chapter 8.32 of the Carlsbad Municipal Code to familiarize themselves with all requirements. Additional background information is provided below:

To obtain a permit, mobile vendors must, at a minimum, have: 

City Business License

All mobile vendors are subject to the city’s business licensing requirements (CMC sections 5.04 and 5.08). 

Most mobile vendors will also require a city vendor permit application, if they utilize a motorized or non-motorized vehicle, food truck, wagon, stand, bike or other form of conveyance for vending activities.

To obtain a business license or vending permit, or to obtain additional information about these rules, please call 760-602-2495.

Special San Diego County rules apply for food product vendors.

California Seller’s Permit

All mobile vendors must possess a valid California Department of Tax and Fee Administration seller’s permit that designates “City of Carlsbad” as a location or sublocation.


All mobile vendors must acquire and maintain any insurance required by the city’s risk manager, such as commercial general liability insurance, auto insurance, or worker’s compensation insurance. Submit copies of all existing insurance policies with your business license application. 

To make a county health permit complaint, please call 858-505-6903.