Vendor - Solicitor - Temporary Merchant Licensing

Temporary Merchants

Temporary Merchants applying for an annual or semi-annual license must have the following pre-requisites (if applicable) when they apply:

  • Cash or Surety Bond in the amount of $1,000.00 per person or $5,000.00 per company;
  • All out-of-state applicants must bring or send a copy of their Driver's License or State Identification Card
  • A Clean-up Bond in the amount of $125 also be submitted with the application of those Temporary Merchants operating Christmas Tree Lots, Fruit & Vegetable Stands, Rug Sales, Picture Sales, etc.
  • If you sell food items, you must contact the Central District Health Department for a Health Certificate.  Once you have your Health Certificate, you must bring it with you and apply for an Eating and Drinking Permit at the same time you apply for your Temporary Merchants License.
  • If you place your operation on a private lot and are operating a Christmas Tree Lot (11/23-1/1), Fruit and Vegetable Stand or other type of stand, you must secure prior to applying for a Temporary Merchants License, a Seasonal Use Zoning Certificate from the Planning & Zoning Division.
  • If you desire to place your operation in the Boise City parks or greenbelt, you must contact Parks Department.
  • If you operate on any public roads, sidewalks, or rights-of way, you and your customers shall not block pedestrian or vehicular traffic.  If you have questions as to your location with respect to this policy, please contact the Ada County Highway District at 387-6100.

Important Notes

A "Temporary Merchant" as defined by City Code is:  "any person, whether owner or otherwise, whether a resident of the City or not, who engages in a temporary business of selling and delivering goods, wares, merchandise and services within the City, and who, in furtherance of such purpose, hires, leases, uses or occupies any building, structure or motor vehicle within the City for the exhibition and sale of food, beverages, goods, merchandise or services."

City Code

Food Cart Vendors

All sidewalk vendors must use approved vending carts as specified by the City Clerk's Office:

  • Street Vending is defined in the City Code as: "The peddling, vending, selling, displaying, or offering for sale of any item of tangible personal property or other thing of value from a mobile vending trailer or vehicle situated on the public rights-of-ways between the curb lines by a vendor to persons on the sidewalk."
  • Street Vending Carts within the Downtown Boise Core Area must be placed over authorized street vending medallions. For information on the location of the Core Area medallions, please call (or email) Andrew Haworth at the City Clerk's Office (972-8150)

Special Event Vendors

All event organizers applying for a blanket vendors license for an event must have the following prerequisites (if applicable) when they apply:

  • City Parks and Recreation Department (if city park land will be used as the event site);
  • Written permission from Ada County Highway District , If event will be on public streets;
  • Police Background Check;
  • Certificate of Insurance for $5000.00 naming the City and ACHD as additional insured;
  • Planning & Zoning Permit (If Event Will Use a Carnival);
  • Fire Department Permit (If Event Will Use a Carnival);
  • A list of any and all individual vendors involved in the event;

Each vendor serving food must have an Eating and Drinking License.

Important Notes

All vendors that are part of the event list - do not require separate vendors licenses - vendors selling food or drink must have a current eating and drinking permit.

A "Special Event" as defined by City Code is: "a preplanned single gathering, event or series of related consecutive daily gatherings or events of an entertainment, cultural, recreational, educational, political, religious or sporting nature, or of any other nature, expected to draw one thousand (1000) or more persons at any session as participants or spectators which is proposed to be held on Boise City Parks and Recreation property or property that is owned, leased, operated, maintained or controlled by Boise City, Ada County Highway District, or the Capital City Development Corporation. Examples of Special Events include, by way of illustration and without limitation, these types of events if conducted in Boise City Parks, on City property, or upon the sidewalks and streets of the City: concerts, dances, assemblages, processions, parades, circuses, fairs, festivals, block parties, community events, mass participation sports (such as, marathons and running events, bicycle races or tours, sports tournaments), other organized activity conducted for a common or collective use. Applicants, sponsors, or promoters of events which would otherwise qualify as a special event but expect less than one thousand (1000) persons shall, at their choice, be entitled to use the City Clerk’s Special Event permit application, related documents, and process to seek appropriate government agency approvals."


A "Solicitor" as defined by City Code is: "an individual, including an employee or agent of a group of individuals, partnership, or corporation, whether a resident of the City or not, who is taking or attempting to take, whether in person or by telephone, orders for sale of food, beverages, goods, merchandise or services to be furnished or performed in the future, whether he is collecting advance payments on such sales or not. Such definitions shall include any person who, for himself, or for another person hires, leases, uses or occupies any building, structure, or motor vehicle within the City for the sole purpose of exhibiting samples and taking orders for future delivery."