Coffee shop operates on honor system, Owners see success - WKRN News 2

Coffee shop operates on honor system, Owners see success

Posted: Updated: Aug 25, 2014 07:15 PM
Courtesy: ABC News Courtesy: ABC News
Courtesy: ABC News Courtesy: ABC News
Courtesy: ABC News Courtesy: ABC News
Courtesy: ABC News Courtesy: ABC News
VALLEY CITY, N.D. -

A coffee shop in North Dakota is finding success even though they don't have a single barista or employee on hand.

The Vault in Valley City operates on the honor system, ABC News reports, even without anyone there to clean up or restock the items that get sold.

“People do a really good job of cleaning up after themselves,” David Brekke, who owns the shop with his wife, said.

He told ABC there's no one there at all.

“My wife opens in the morning, she bakes baked goods, restocks and cleans,” Brekke explained. “During the week, usually one of us will stop in during the day to do restocking as necessary, but it's usually not. And I close up at night.”

Prices are listed next to the items and customers are responsible for charging themselves.

They can pay with cash, a credit card or even a check.

“People love it,” Brekke said. “It's kind of an extension of people's living rooms.”

He and his wife have found great success, even with regular coffee priced at just 75 cents.

Prices are kept low since Brekke doesn't have employees and profits have been much better than expected.

There's even a sign hanging in the shop that tells customers to “round down and give yourself a break or round up and help us stay in business.”

Customers even donate spare cash to help The Vault, and some stop in to use the facilities to hang out and donate even if they don't buy coffee or baked goods.

“Between rounding up and donations, we're 15 percent over,” Brekke said.

He explained that he knows the self-serve model wouldn't work everywhere, and said Valley City's close-knit community is what makes it so successful.

“The community feels like a very large family. I meet people that I haven't met before on a regular basis, but everyone knows everyone else to some degree,” Brekke said. “And there's a comfort in that. I think it brings out the best in people.”

*ABC News contributed to this story.

Powered by WorldNow

441 Murfreesboro Road Nashville, TN 37210

Telephone: 615.369.7222
Fax: 615.369.7329
Email: news@wkrn.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Young Broadcasting of Nashville, LLC. A Media General Company.