23 March, 2021 in Industry News

Challenges for the hospitality and tourism sector post lockdown

The exit roadmaps have been published and businesses in Northern Ireland are beginning to get an indication of when they might be able to reopen.

While dates may not be set in stone, now more than ever it is essential that businesses begin to focus on what they can control to begin to move forward.

In July last year Shauna McStravick assessed the importance of businesses continually reviewing and planning for the uncertainty that lay ahead, particularly for those in the hospitality and tourism sector. The same advice still rings true today, as restrictions begin to lift in varying degrees, there are steps the hospitality and tourism sector can take to ensure they plan for the longer term.

Planning and understanding the business position

Establish the business’s new breakeven point. It is likely that businesses will have to operate, initially at least, with some form of restrictions in place. Businesses should review their fixed and variable costs to see if any reductions can be made.

Regularly and continually monitor the businesses financial position. By continuously monitoring and evaluating performance the business can remain agile and be proactive in implementing measures that may be needed in order to trade through this difficult period.

Be willing to adapt

Implementing new strategies could be the main method of survival, particularly where restrictions may remain in place for some time.

Economies of scale may also help businesses bounce back when they are allowed to reopen again. Businesses could:

  • Scale down menus to reduce costs (and waste) and potentially increase the overall gross margin.
  • Implement an app for ordering food and drink for in-house dining, therefore reducing time spent on the premises and at the same time potentially increasing table turnover rate.
  • If the business offers in-room dining/drinks, it may wish to consider removing any surcharge payable.  
  • review their online presence and the promotion of offers to encourage consumer uptake.

As the industry begins to reopen, there is no doubt there will be challenges ahead. This is the third time the hospitality and tourism sector has been forced to shut and reopen so businesses are well versed in what it takes to get back off the ground. By fully understanding their business, proactively planning and adapting quickly as regulations change, these sectors can look forward to normality returning.

Interested in finding out more? Contact:

Whilst every effort has been made by CavanaghKelly to ensure the accuracy of the information here, it cannot be guaranteed and neither CavanaghKelly nor any related entity shall have liability to any person who relies on the information herein. Information given here is for guidance only. Detailed professional advice should be taken before acting on any information contained herein. If having read the guidance here, you would like to discuss further; a member of our team would be pleased to help you.