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Restaurants after confinement: menus only on mobile and reservation required


The coronavirus will change the way we live. This was stated on Friday by the Finance Minister and Government Spokesperson, María Jesús Montero. And, if there is a sector that has to redefine the concept of what it is, what it offers its customers and how it offers it, it is that of restoration. Even more when bars and restaurants They closed their doors in mid-March, when the state of alarm was decreed, and today they do not know when they will be able to reopen them and under what conditions.

This crisis may be ahead about 40,000 establishments, 15% of the total network, if they do not receive any type of public aid, according to estimates by the Spanish Catering and Hospitality Brands, the main employers in the sector, most of them small and medium-sized companies, which had returned to the I fly after the economic crisis of a decade ago.

“This situation is different from that of 2008 in which years of depressed consumption were anticipated due to a lack of disposable income among consumers; on this occasion the contemplated scenario is more of a 'hibernation' scenario; Well, businesses are also "hibernating" and in the end there are four major cost items for a hotelier who must manage and, to the extent that he is able to manage them effectively, will have the ability to get ahead, "he explains. José Ignacio Nieto, partner in charge of the Retail and Consumer Area for Iberia at Kearney.

Four items that, according to the partner of the firm, refer to the personnel management, where ERTE can partially help; rent, the ability to renegotiate better conditions; the cost of the goods, given that in the future it may count on financial support from manufacturers and distributors; and, finally, the payment of credits, with conditions that can be renegotiated.


Once the establishments have been saved, they will have to adapt to the new reality, where social distancing will be expected, for an unlimited time. The first option, separate customers at least one meter. Something significantly complicated in bars. Another option, put partition screens, little feasible for the Hospitality Association of Spain, due to the high cost involved.

The alternative, as proposed by this association representing 300,000 stores, is to limit the capacity, which will entail a substantial reduction in cash and increase the cleaning measures, place disinfectant dispensers or even, measure the temperature of customers when they arrive at the premises, options that would give guarantees to diners without incurring a large additional cost.

They will not be the only stockings. The menus in hand are going to disappear, they will have to be digital or pull the traditional blackboard. We are going to a “greater use of mobile applications and digital solutions, the reservations and the capacity of restaurants is adapted to the measures recommended by governments in each of the countries. Restaurants will increase their digital presence: digital menus and menus available on mobile of diners to avoid contact, limitation of capacity and reservations with reservation application systems ”, explains José Ignacio Nieto.

You will have to adapt and being a high-end restaurant does not guarantee having more survival mattress. "The premium segment will be affected in all sectors, also in catering, although by type of differentiated offer and more loyal public, it may seem that they have an advantageous situation. However, they have very high operating costs (rentals, staff, etc.) and require very high traffic to get their numbers out, ”says the Kearney partner.

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