London has been revealed to be the flakiest city in the UK for ghosting bookings, according to restaurant booking platform TheFork.
Under the current restrictions in the hospitality sector, a pandemic-provoked ‘spread booking’ phenomenon has been reported by an increasing number of bars and restaurants.
Some customers have been booking a table at more than one venue for the same time slot, so to avoid disappointment if the booking gets cancelled, after over a year of social lives sitting stagnant.
However, it could cost UK restaurant owners £6.2m in lost revenue if this ‘no-show’ trend continues at the same trajectory, TheFork calculated.
“Our industry has been blighted by no-shows since restrictions were lifted, which has had a huge knock on effect across our business,” manager at Hilton London’s DoubleTree, Jade Ajwani, explained. “Not only does it lead to lost revenue, but it means our staff have their hours cut and food goes to waste.”
“In normal times it is difficult enough to fill spaces at such short notice and given the safety concerns in operating a walk in policy at present, it is less likely that we are able to recoup the lost revenue,” she continued.
“Now, more than ever, we need the public to get behind us, to get out and eat out as much as possible, but to also be considerate in their booking behaviour.”
Nearly one-in-five, or 19 per cent, of Brits have admitted to not arriving for a restaurant reservation over the past four weeks – citing ‘spread booking’ as the number one reason behind leaving a reserved table empty.
Of those who did not turn up to a booking in the past month, 30 per cent said it was because they had made more than one reservation at the exact same time slot.
While the capital led TheFork’s flaky list, Glasgow, Manchester and Plymouth followed – making them the top four flakiest cities in the UK.