Britons forecast to spend £3.8bn on hospitality after lockdown

by | 05 Jun 2020 | News

UK adults are keen to return to hotels, restaurants, bars and pubs quickly. (Photo: Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash)

A poll of 2,000 UK adults shows just under half have gained a renewed appreciation for the hospitality sector following the pandemic.

A survey conducted by Caterer.com suggests consumers in Britain are chomping at the bit to get back into hotels, restaurants, bars and pubs. We take a closer look at the research, which reveals UK consumers are collectively planning to spend £3.8bn in these venues in the first week after the Covid19 lockdown lifts.

Renewed appreciation for hospitality in the UK

There is perhaps nothing more British than heading to the local pub for a few pints, and a litmus test of UK attitudes suggests this may well be the first item on the public’s agenda when the hospitality sector reopens to the public. Caterer.com, a recruitment website specialising in hospitality, is seeking to gauge the nation’s mood with its latest survey, which offers plenty of reason for optimism to those working in the sector.

The global hospitality industry has been decimated by Covid19, and those living in some parts of the world may view their first steps back into hotels, restaurants, bars and pubs with trepidation. However, it seems that the British public cannot wait to return to their favoured haunts; indeed, they actively want to support the hospitality industry with more than half of the 2,000 nationally representative UK adults surveyed wanting to get “back to normal”, while just under half said they now have a renewed appreciation for the sector itself.

Neil Pattison, director at Caterer.com, said: “While this has been an incredibly painful time for the sector, it’s encouraging to see the public have a huge appreciation for what the hospitality sector provides to communities. There is a strong appetite to support these businesses and workers in getting back on their feet.”

Consumer trust of paramount importance

Proprietors of hospitality businesses know they will need to instil a sense of safety and security in customers to rebuild trust. Interestingly, the Caterer.com survey sheds light on which areas are worth focusing on, with 62% saying they would feel comfortable dining in a restaurant where every second table was occupied, while 41% admitted they would pay a premium to know they were frequenting an establishment that employed enhanced cleaning practices.

Elsewhere, 54% of potential customers said they think hand sanitizer should be provided to all customers and staff, and 47% would prefer it if all staff were trained up in the new cleaning protocols. In other news, 36% of those interviewed were in favour of social distancing managers enforcing the policy, and 22% think all staff should wear personal protective equipment.

UKHospitality CEO Kate Nicholls said: “Consumer confidence is going to be key once businesses begin to reopen. It is going to be a long, hard road back to normality and venues are going to need the support of their communities.” And on this particular point, 63% of respondents said they want to support local hospitality businesses as soon as possible, as long as the right safety measures have been put in place.

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