A survey of over 10,000 diners has helped one of the UK’s fastest growing hospitality businesses get itself ready for post-lockdown dining.
The survey was undertaken by Black and White Hospitality – which owns the franchise rights to eight Marco Pierre White concepts – to assist the business with plans to reopen its 48 franchised restaurants across the UK.
The results have now given the team a great insight into people’s feelings about eating out, in what will become the ‘new normal’.
Jade Mallia, marketing director said: “There’s no denying that the hospitality sector has been hit hard by this pandemic, however we’re determined to come out of this by hitting the ground running so that our customers can feel reassured we’ve done all we can to provide them with a safe dining environment.
“We were delighted with the response and would like to thank all those who filled in the survey. The results are now helping us, and our franchise partners prepare for post-lockdown opening.”
One of the top line results found that when asked if they would dine out if social distancing measures were in place 96 per cent said yes.
Jade added: “It’s imperative we understand what our customers are thinking when they are considering eating out once the Covid-19 lockdown has been eased.
“Key will be to not only demonstrate but reassure all our customers that will be doing all we can to ensure not only their safety but that of the staff.”
Only 10 per cent said they would be very unlikely to resume normal eating habits after lockdown restrictions are lifted and when asked if using contactless payment only would be cause of concern, over 95 per cent said no.
When asked what would give them confidence in dining once restaurants reopen, 85 per cent said increased sanitiser stations. 77 per cent said clear evidence of social distancing, while 66 per cent said temperature checks for staff.
Other factors that would give customers confidence included being able to view menus on smart phones (56 per cent), increased visibility of cleaning (56 per cent), tables not being laid (49 per cent) and use of disposable menus (47 per cent).
Interestingly the wearing of masks by members of staff was chosen by 32 per cent of those surveyed.
Nearly 50 per cent said they would prefer to dine in rather than make use of a delivery service.
Jade concluded: “We will constantly monitor not only Government guidelines but also the sentiment of our customers so that we can adapt not only the dining space but also the kitchens so that customers as well as front and back of house staff are all kept safe.”