How Much Does It Cost To Open A Bowling Alley?

how much does it cost to open a bowling alley

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How much does it cost to open a bowling alley? You can start a bowling alley independently, but it isn’t very easy. Owning and running a bowling alley can be both gratifying and frightening.

What do you want to achieve, and how will it benefit you? Where should you begin, and how much will it set you back?

For those interested in establishing a bowling alley, the following is a breakdown of the expenses.

Costs of Starting, Licensing, and Running a Business

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How Much Does It Cost To Open A Bowling Alley?

Establishing a bowling alley necessitates careful budgeting for the many overhead expenditures. All relevant government-related paperwork expenses are included in the price.

Another aspect to consider is the cost of finance. Before starting a project, financing is crucial.

These costs may vary considerably based on where you reside. In the United States, business registration fees range from a few hundred dollars to an extra $1200 per year for business insurance.

Depending on the size and layout of your bowling alley, you may have to pay more for insurance.

You’ll also need a website and advertising to start as a new firm. An essential website may be purchased for less than $100, but having a professional one constructed for you might cost you several thousand dollars or more. The initial cost of advertising alone may be several thousand dollars.

You’ll have to deal with taxes as soon as you earn money. Corporate charges are unlikely to harm you, but they can be prohibitive when you start making money.

You must factor these costs into your overall financial plan to avoid being in a financial crisis in the future. A certified public accountant or accountant should handle taxes and other operating expenses.


This is the most important expenditure for your company, and it varies widely depending on your sector.

Many people construct their bowling alleys at home but seldom aim to establish a commercial bowling alley. Are you creating a new location for your alley or renting an existing one?

If you want to rent a pre-existing home, it might save you a lot of money. Bowling alley construction expenses are far more upfront than a basic bowling alley.

A better location with more consumers may be available for construction as a disadvantage. It’s critical to get dimensions before renting a place.

When providing information to the architect or builder, it is critical to consider the location and spacing of columns and posts within a bowling alley.

Amount Of Space Required

I’m also interested in the precise dimensions of your planned bowling alley. A three-lane alley is considerably smaller than that of a thirty-lane alley in terms of space.

You’ll need at least 1,000 square feet per lane to include all of the additional rooms and features your business will need. If you try to fit 12 lanes into a space meant for everything else with only 12,000 square feet available, you’ll run out of room OR; your bowling center takes up more than half of the structure’s total surface area, you should think about expanding it.

If you want to construct an eight-lane arcade, you’ll need 8,000 square feet. In some areas, renting a facility costs $15 per square foot per year, while in others, it may cost as much as $40 per square foot.

In today’s bowling centers, revenue from just bowling is not enough to support them. Many bowling alleys have introduced dining, bars, game rooms, laser tag, and other profitability-generating functions in recent years to broaden their appeal to the public.

Consider the cost per square foot in the location where you want to start your business. Then multiply that number by the total number of square feet to indicate how much you’ll pay each month in rent.

Unless you’re moving to a location where bowling alleys have already been built, planning for their construction is necessary. If you wish to add more construction, your initial expenditure will certainly rise considerably.

Opening a Bowling Alley Requirements

In addition to the lanes and space, you must also think about the rest of the bowling alley equipment. You’ll need pinsetters, bowling pins, bowling ball rentals, and illumination, among other things.

There might be a variance in your costs depending on whether you buy secondhand or new equipment. The typical cost estimate for each lane is $45,000 to $60,000. That’s a lot of money! The number of lanes will also determine the price per lane.

The cost per lane of a 16-lane center is less than that of an 8-lane alley. The price of constructing a new house might likewise increase the cost.


It isn’t a significant problem if you want to operate your bowling alley. If you intend on employing anybody, you’ll need considerably more money.

Even if you only have a few employees, payroll and payroll taxes may quickly rack up. Even if you employ a few teenagers for a couple of hours each week, their salaries will accumulate.

Running a successful bowling alley business necessitates determining how much assistance you’ll require and how competitive you’re willing to be with pay. Starting salaries have increased dramatically in some locations while others have remained low.

Other Expenses

There are several more costs associated with running a business. Some of the expenses to consider are utilities, cleaning, décor, and payment and software. Except for a few locations, however, you may be able to get by without lighting and temperature control.

Payment software is generally provided with the scoring system by the firm that provides the computerized scoring system. A certain number of lanes are usually included in the price of a POS system.

The first question is, “How much money do you have?” The following questions are devoted to the type of business you want to start and the amount of money you can invest in it.

Adding video games, food, bowling, and other activities is fine to make it a “fun for the whole family” location. If you’re on a budget, you may drastically reduce these frills.

To get your bowling alley up and operating, you may anticipate spending anything from $80,000 to $500,000. This ranges from a few thousand dollars to a million or more, depending on the size of the project.


Free  Friends Holding Bowling Balls Stock Photo
How much does it cost to open a bowling alley?

So, what does it cost to open a bowling alley? It’s not as cheap as you may think. You have to factor in licensing and business costs and the price of the necessary equipment. However, opening a bowling alley can be an extremely lucrative business venture with careful planning and execution. We hope this article has been helpful and informative. Now that you know all there is to know about starting a bowling alley go out there and make your dream a reality!

Picture of Shmulik Dorinbaum

Shmulik Dorinbaum

I play bowling almost daily, and on the days I'm not? I'm writing about my day and what I need to do to improve myself as a better bowling player.

Picture of Shmulik Dorinbaum

Shmulik Dorinbaum

I play bowling almost daily, and on the days I'm not? I'm writing about my day and what I need to do to improve myself as a better bowling player.

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