The Restaurant Association sought member feedback on the impact of Covid-19 in a series of short surveys.
This sixth survey was conducted at the beginning of May, 2020.
The announcement from the Government indicating a move to Alert Level 3, which allowed the reopening of hospitality establishments through restricted takeaway and pick up services, was generally welcomed by the industry. The fact that so many were considering reopening and adapting their business models to accommodate the new rules is testament to the innovative and resilient nature of those that work in hospo.
Whilst this move to be able to reopen was seen as a positive step, we were still acutely aware of the fact that this will not work for all businesses. Alert Level 3 is good news for those that offered a takeaway or delivery service before lockdown and that have a road side frontage able to manage pick ups. However, even for those businesses we are aware that it will at best allow them to break even.
This latest survey sought to find out how many businesses did reopen at Level 3, and how business has been for those operators.
- The survey results indicate that almost 71% reopened (national average 67%), predominantly for takeaways (89% (national average 92%)), however, 50% have included delivery (national average 60%) and 17% are offering meal kits.
- Unfortunately, 98% of the survey respondents indicated that they have experienced a downturn in customers, despite reopening (national average 89%), with just 1% saying they have had an upturn in customers compared to this time last year.
- In addition, the survey has show a jump in the number of employers that are considering the need to undergo a restructuring process in their business in the future – 73% saying over the next 30 days they anticipate the need to restructure to reduce the number of staff overall (or are in the process of this).
“Previously takeaways and deliveries would have accounted for about 30% of our business. Based on the last four days we are only achieving about 50% of last year. The customers we have see are very keen to support us. Most people are staying at home.”