How to Open a Gas Station Business in the USA: Investment, Franchise Cost, Business Plan, and Profit

Starting a gas station business can be a great way to ensure a steady income stream. But as with any business, there are certain things you need to know before you get started. This blog post will explore how to open a gas station business in the USA. We will cover investment, franchise cost, business plan, and profit topics. By the end of this post, you will have a better understanding of what it takes to start a gas station business in the USA. 

How to Open a Gas Station Business in the USA
Image Source

How to open a gas station business in the USA

Business plan

When opening a gas station business in the USA, you need to know a few things. First, you’ll need to make a significant investment – typically around $1 million. You’ll also need to choose whether to go the franchise route or start your independent gas station. Once you’ve made your investment and chosen your path, it’s time to create a business plan.

This should include a detailed analysis of the market you’re entering, your competition, and your target customers. Your business plan should also outline your marketing strategy and how you plan to generate profits. With a solid business plan, you’re well on your way to opening a successful gas station business in the USA.

Profit potential

When it comes to the profit potential of a gas station business, you should consider a few things. First, the location of the gas station is critical. A gas station in a high-traffic area is more likely to generate higher profits than one in a less populated area. Second, the price of gas is another important factor. If gas prices are low, profit margins will be thinner. Conversely, if gas prices are high, profit margins will be wider.

Finally, the type of gas station business model will also impact profits. For example, full-service stations typically have higher profit margins than self-service stations. Assuming all things are equal, a typical gas station can generate annual profits of $100,000. Of course, this figure will vary based on the factors mentioned above. Nevertheless, a gas station business can be very lucrative for those willing to invest the time and money required to get it up and running.

In case you missed it: How to Open a Chicken Shop/Center in India: Investment, Profit Margin, License, and Business Plan

Gas Station Business in the USA
Image Source

5 Steps to opening your own gas station

  1. Determine your gas station, business model. There are three common gas station business models: an independent operator, an owner-operator, or a franchised model. 
  2. Investigate the upfront costs associated with opening a gas station. These costs can range from $150,000 – $1 million+, depending on the size and location of your gas station. 
  3. Develop a comprehensive business plan. This plan should include your financial projections, marketing strategy, and operational plans. 
  4. Choose the right location for your gas station. This is one of the most important aspects of starting a successful gas station business; you will need to find a location with high traffic volume and good visibility from the road. 
  5. Obtain the necessary permits and licenses from your state government to operate your gas station business legally

License and permits needed to open a gas station in the USA

To open a gas station in the United States, you must obtain several federal, state, and local government licenses and permits. The first step is to obtain a business license from the federal government. You can do this by registering your business with the Small Business Administration. Once you have registered your business, you must apply for a tax identification number from the Internal Revenue Service.

In case you missed it: Bamboo Straw Business Plan: Manufacturing Process, Investment, Profit, and Machine Cost

Gas Station View
Image Source

Next, you will need to obtain a state license from the state where you wish to operate your gas station. Each state has its requirements for licensing gas stations. You must contact your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles for more information. Finally, you will need to obtain a permit from your local municipality. This permit will allow you to construct the gas station on your property. Once your gas station is built, you must obtain an operating license from your municipality or appropriate local county/state authorities.

How to open a gas station with no money in the USA?

Opening a gas station is a capital-intensive venture. Buying or leasing the land, building the gas station, and outfitting it with the necessary pumps and tanks can run into hundreds of thousands of dollars. Then there are the ongoing business costs, such as staff salaries, utilities, and inventory. With all that in mind, it’s no wonder that most gas stations are owned by major oil companies or large retailers who can afford to front the significant amount of money required to get started.

But what if you’re an entrepreneur with a great idea for a gas station but no money to finance it? There are a few options available to you. One is to find an investor willing to provide the capital you need in exchange for a percentage of ownership in your business. This can be not easy, especially if you don’t have a solid business plan or track record to show potential investors.

Another option is to apply for a small business loan. This can be tricky, as many lenders will require collateral, such as your home or another asset, to secure the loan. And if you don’t have good credit, it may not be easy to qualify for a loan large enough to cover the costs of starting a gas station. A third option is to lease the land and building from another party.

Investment required for opening a gas station in the USA

The cost of setting up a gas station in the USA can vary widely depending on the location, size, and type of gas station you want to build. For example, a small independent gas station in a rural area may cost as little as $100,000 to construct, while a large chain gas station in a major city could cost over $1 million. There are several other costs to consider when opening a gas station, such as the cost of the land (if you don’t already own it), the cost of any necessary permits and inspections, and the cost of marketing and advertising to get customers in the door.

In case you missed it: How to Start a Car Wash Business in the USA: Business Plan, License, Cost, and Profit

Gas Station Design
Image Source

Plus, you’ll need enough money to cover your running costs like utilities, staff salaries, and inventory. In short, there is no easy answer regarding how much money you’ll need to open a gas station in the USA. However, with careful planning and budgeting, it is possible to get started with a relatively small investment.

Cost of a gas station franchise in the USA 

It varies depending on the brand and location. For example, a Shell gas station franchise can cost anywhere from $150,000 to $4 million, while a Chevron gas station franchise can cost from $200,000 to over $5 million. The average cost of a gas station franchise in the USA is approximately $1 million.

Gas station owner salary per day in the USA

The average gas station owner makes about $100 to $500 daily in the United States. It can vary greatly depending on the gas station’s location, the type of gas station, and the owner’s business model. Some gas stations are open 24 hours a day, while others have more limited hours. Gas stations open 24 hours a day usually make more money than those with limited hours.

The type of gas station also affects how much money the owner makes daily. A full-service gas station usually makes more money than a self-service gas station. The owner’s business model also affects how much money they make daily. Some owners only sell gasoline, while others sell snacks, drinks, and other convenience store items. The owners who sell additional items usually make more money than those who only sell gasoline.

In case you missed it: How to Start a Dropshipping Business in the USA: Business Plan, Cost, Profit, and Requirements

Gas Filling
Image Source

Risks involved in the gas station business in the USA

  1. Gas prices fluctuate greatly and can impact profitability. 
  2. There is a potential for theft and vandalism at gas stations. 
  3. Gas stations are often located in high-traffic areas, which can lead to accidents. 
  4. There is a risk of fire at gas stations due to the presence of flammable materials. 
  5. Some gas stations offer services such as car washes and convenience stores, which can increase the chances of liability claims.

8 Tips for successful gas station business in the USA

  1. Choose the best location: The first step to starting a successful gas station business is finding the right location. Look for a spot that is convenient for drivers and has high visibility. 
  2. Get the proper licenses and permits: Before opening your gas station, you must obtain the proper licenses and permits from your local government. 
  3. Choose the right fuel products: Not all gasoline is created equal. You must choose the right fuel products for your gas station to attract customers. 
  4. Invest in good signage: Good signage is essential for any business, but it is especially important for a gas station. Your signs should be visible and easy to read so drivers can easily find your station. 
  5. Offer competitive prices: To attract customers, you will need to offer competitive prices on your gasoline and other products. 
  6. Keep your station clean and well-lit: First impressions are important, so you will want to ensure that your gas station is clean and well-lit at all times. 
  7. Hire friendly and helpful staff: Friendly and helpful staff can go a long way in making your gas station a success. Make sure to hire employees who are customer service oriented. 
  8. Offer additional services: In addition to selling gasoline, you can also offer other services such as car washes and oil changes. This will help to differentiate your business from the competition.

In case you missed it: Profitable Small Business Ideas in the USA: Top and Best List

Gas Pump
Image Source


Starting a gas station business in the USA can be a lucrative and rewarding venture. However, it is important to research and understand the costs before making decisions. This article gives you insights into what you need to know to open a successful gas station business. 


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here