The Handbook
The Handbook

It looks like the Chancellor will be dining out on his plans for hospitality for a while. Literally, because Rishi Sunak just announced that we’re all going to be eligible for restaurant dining vouchers worth 50% off the cost of a meal, while the cost of dining out will go down due to a big VAT cut.

The hospitality VAT cut has been signalled for weeks, and will rip up the current 20% rate and replace it with a new 5% tax. Which means if you were going to drop £300 on a fancy post-lockdown country house mini break for you and your partner, it’d now cost £255, or if you were planning dinner in a restaurant costing £50 you’d now only have to stump up £42.50, giving you enough for a short Uber home.

Another major plank of the Chancellor’s plan is a new restaurant voucher scheme, with Sunak declaring “We will give everyone in the country an ‘eat out to help out’ discount”. The new scheme will see participating restaurants offer everyone 50% off meals on Mondays to Wednesdays days over August (to a maximum of £10 per person), packing restaurants with Brits in lieu of the usual overseas tourist rush they might have expected in normal times, and giving us all reason to cheer in otherwise uncertain economic environment.

Alongside these two large announcements, the Chancellor pledged support for various home improvements, a scheme to pay bonuses to companies bringing back employees from furlough to the tune of £1,000 each plus a traineeship scheme to get people into work.

Hospitality has been waiting for further action from the government, let’s see if this is enough as the industry faces one of the most challenging periods in, like, ever…