Diners across the UK will from today (August 3) be able to enjoy half-price meals throughout August from Monday, as part of a government scheme aimed at boosting restaurants and pubs post-lockdown.
The government’s “Eat out to help out” applies to eat-in food and drink on Monday to Wednesdays, which to date has seen over 72,000 businesses sign up.
The discount is capped at £10 per person applies to food and soft drinks but does not include to alcoholic beverages
hospitality businesses including Michelin-starred dining rooms, multi-outlet casual dining chains, pubs and fast-food outlets have signed up to take part in the deal, with many launching special menus or adding their own sweeteners to attract customers through the door.
The scheme was launched to help drive the public back into restaurants following the Covid-19 lockdown which resulted in almost the entire sector being closed, and to help protect the livelihoods of the 1.8 million people employed across the industry by increasing covers on what are characteristically quieter days. Around 80% of hospitality firms stopped trading in April, with 1.4 million workers furloughed, the highest of any sector ,according to government data.
The government has also launched a restaurant finder tool for people to discover who is offering the deal near them, which has received over 3 million hits since launching last week.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak today said: “Our Eat Out to Help Out scheme’s number one aim is to help protect the jobs of 1.8 million chefs, waiters and restaurateurs by boosting demand and getting customers through the door.
“More than 72,000 establishments will be serving discounted meals across the country, with the government paying half the bill. The industry is a vital ingredient to our economy and it’s been hit hard by coronavirus, so enjoy summer safely by showing your favourite places your support – we’ll pay half.”
The scheme is being used alongside other targeted help such as a cut in VAT for hospitality and tourism businesses.