Coronavirus National & International

‘Eat out to help out’ scheme for hospitality industry detailed

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Diners will soon be able to get money off their bill on certain days in August to encourage a return to cafes, pubs and restaurants, according to the BBC. 

It’s hoped the ”eat out to help out” scheme will provide a boost to the struggling hospitality industry, now that the national lockdown is easing. 

It is valid all day Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3 to 31 August, in all parts of the UK that are not in a local lockdown.

The maximum discount available is £10 per person when you eat or drink in. 

Food and drink will appear on the menu at full price, and the restaurant will deduct the money off the bill and claim it back from the government.

The discount is only available on food and drink that you intend to consume on the premises, and can be used as many times as you like.

There is no limit on how many people can use the discount in one party, and it includes children.

Participating venues are supposed to offer the full 50% discount all day Monday to Wednesday and across the whole food and soft drink menu.

There’s no minimum spend and you don’t have to order food to be eligible, for example a £3 coffee would cost £1.50 under the scheme.

The promotion covers participating:

  • Restaurants (including those in hotels leisure centres and holiday parks)
  • Cafes
  • Bars and pubs that serve food
  • Canteens
  • Food halls with a seating area
  • Members’ clubs 

Establishments can choose whether to sign up, and can join the scheme at any point. 

To be eligible they must have a designated dining or drinking area, or access to one, and have been registered with their local authority since at least 7 July 2020. Businesses that have used the furlough scheme can apply.

A full list of places taking part will be available shortly. 

The discount cannot be used on alcoholic drinks, service charges or food for a private function or event.

As the idea is to encourage people to eat in, establishments that are takeaway-only are not eligible.

In August, when many premises will have reopened, the government hopes diners will be enticed in by the discount on offer. It also wants it to boost confidence in going out, and increase footfall at the quieter end of the week. The scheme is being used alongside other targeted help such as a cut in VAT for hospitality and tourism businesses. 

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