Consumers Are Ready To Return To Pubs, But Only 50% Can Open Outdoors

The BII and Oxford Partnership have released the headline results of a joint research programme of BII members and consumers ahead of reopening next week.

Whilst only just over 50% of BII member venues are able to open outdoors in England on Monday 12th April, the research shows an encouraging trend of strong demand from consumers to get back to their local pub.

However, this early phase of reopening for many of our pubs, will be loss making, with 40% operating on reduced hours until they can reopen inside in May and fully reopen from June 21st.

The consumer research from a You Gov survey says that 2/3 of the public who will visit our nations’ hospitality venues in April are doing so to reconnect with family and friends in pubs at the heart of their communities.

Whilst consumers will be welcomed back by their pubs, these early stages of reopening will be significantly challenging for operators for many months to come on their long road to recovery.

In order for our pubs to survive, they need to be free of restrictions at the earliest opportunity.

Steven Alton, BII CEO commented:

“The results of the combined research from BII members and consumers ahead of reopening are heartening to see. Whilst our hard hit pubs are understandably cautious about how the public will respond to their venues once open, the research shows that many more people are ready to return to their pubs over the next few weeks and months.

“We cannot wait to see our members’ gardens coming to life once more and know that the public will be well taken care of as they reconnect with friends and family this summer.”

Oxford Partnership’s Advanced Analytics Director, Chris Naughton, commented:

“It’s truly heartening to see that over half of BII members we surveyed will be reopening on Monday and that almost all of them (94%) say that they will be back in action from May 17th.

“These findings really demonstrate the beginnings of a light at the end of what has been a very long tunnel for the On Trade. What’s also great news is that consumers seem just as eager to get back into the trade, so it really feels like there is genuine hope for the hospitality industry at last.”

You can view the report overview here.