Tune in Tuesday Episode 5
Tune in Tuesday - Episode 5
Welcome back to another Tune in Tuesday Episode 5 presented by Orlagh. This week we will be discussing the government’s new Eat Out To Help Out scheme.
What is Eat Out To Help Out?
From Monday, August the 3rd some restaurants will be taking part in Eat Out To Help Out. This scheme allows customers to get 50% off food and non-alcoholic drinks on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout August. You can receive a maximum discount of £10 per person; the limit applies to children, as well as groups. Businesses taking part will then be able to claim money back, and the government will pay them within five working days. A restaurant can pair the scheme with other offers and discounts, as well as using the plan multiple times.
A mixture of independent and larger businesses are joining in on this scheme. Participating firms include McDonald’s, Nando’s, Starbucks, Burger King, KFC and Pizza Hut.
Why is the government introducing this scheme?
The government has decided to start this scheme to encourage people to go back to restaurants as this industry has seen a significant impact during the coronavirus pandemic. The goal is to increase sales on the days, which are usually less busy in the week to help businesses to try and get back to normal.
Government has said that this scheme is hopefully going to protect the jobs of 1.8 million chefs and waiters. This industry is a significant part of the UK’s economy, and 80% of hospitality places closed in April, which resulted in 1.4 million employees placed on furlough, the highest of all sectors.
Will this benefit small businesses?
Many venues have reopened since July the 4th. However, they have instructed to operate at a lower capacity to comply with social distancing rules. In turn, it has reduced the number of people visiting restaurants around the UK. Protecting the 1.8 million jobs within the hospitality industry and boost demand is the schemes main aim.
As a result, the scheme will potentially help small businesses as a sales promotion could be enough of an incentive for people to begin spending again. One key benefit for many companies is that the government will provide the restaurant with the other half of the bill. Therefore ensuring the restaurant will not suffer financially.
Will it work?
As the hospitality industry is vital to the UK economy the eat out to help out initiative is very beneficial. An incentive will allow the consumer to begin spending, consequently helping the UK economy recover after the five months Lockdown. The UK economy has experienced its worse quarterly fall since 1979 with a -2.2% change from the previous quarter.
Hopefully, the scheme will encourage people to come into establishments to purchase food, and it will allow many in the hospitality industry to return to work. While helping the economy, it will also significantly impact businesses. Many families have experienced financial difficulties with many out of jobs or on furlough. Encouraging people to spend at restaurants will allow many to return to work and be on a full wage again. Those businesses struggling to pay rent will now have an extra boost in revenue with customers enticed by the 50% deal.
Critics fear that the success of the scheme will encourage overeating of unhealthy food and therefore should be full price. The suggestions are in line with our last week’s topic about the ban on junk food ads as the UK focuses on the obesity problem. Some fear that this deal will only encourage people to eat more high-calorie meals.
Is it safe to go to restaurants and pubs?
The government has provided places with guidance regarding reopening after Lockdown, where specific measures must be put in place to keep customers safe. There has been an increase in the use of apps to order food. Using an app has allowed customers to remain seated at their table. Most places require table bookings to allow social distancing. Staff must always wash their hands before touching plates and cutlery. Music is to be at a low volume as this reduces the chance of people shouting, which would increase the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Many places are encouraging customers to sit outside; however, indoor seating uses plastic screens. Some staff are using face masks and protective eyewear, yet this is not at all restaurants. Guidance on how to operate contact tracing was published. Bars and restaurants need to take the contact details from one individual in each group. The restaurant stores collected data for 21 days.
If a customer tests positive for the virus, staff may also need to get tested, take extra precautions with social distancing and sometimes may need to self-isolate. Some pubs which reopened on July the 4th have since closed due to customers testing positive for coronavirus.
How can your business join the scheme?
To register your business for the scheme you must sell food for consumption on the premises, have a dining area to eat in, and register before July the 7th. Companies that cannot join the scheme include those that only do takeaways, catering services for private functions, hotel room service, and mobile food vans.
If you are registering 25 places or less, you have to provide information about each establishment. To register you will need a Government Gateway user ID and password and will then receive a registration reference number which you will use when you claim the reimbursement. There are also promotional materials available to download to show your customers that you are taking part in the scheme.
How has Mustang been Involved?
Junction 29 requested for Mustang to supply two external vinyl 15ft banners for their truckstop in Chesterfield. These banners are to promote the Eat Out To Help Out scheme, run by the government to help build up trade in cafes such as Junction 29’s. The banners are displayed around the boundaries of the truckstop. J29 also required printing A5 flyers, explaining to customers the advantages of the Eat Out scheme.
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