Christmas Day takings 60% lower than pre-Covid levels for hospitality firms

·1-min read
General view of a traditional Christmas Dinner on Christmas Day (David Davies/PA) (PA Archive)
General view of a traditional Christmas Dinner on Christmas Day (David Davies/PA) (PA Archive)

Pubs, bars and restaurants recorded Christmas Day sales that were 60% lower than pre-pandemic levels, according to trade body UKHospitality.

The organisation estimates operators each lost £10,335 on average in takings in the week running up to December 25, compared with the same period in 2019.

It marks a blow for businesses that had seen trade improving before the Omicron Covid variant arrived, and ahead of plan B restrictions coming in.

UKHospitality, which is led by Kate Nicholls, said city centre and London venues had been hit particularly hard “by the new work from home restrictions, the drop in consumer confidence, and [lower] footfall”.

Numerous hospitality firms this month reported seeing many Christmas party cancellations.

Nicholls said: “Hospitality businesses have been hit hard during a key trading period – and this after missing out on the crucial Christmas and New Year sales last year.”

Nicholls added: “Restrictions must be kept to a minimum and must be lifted as quickly as possible to help an already beleaguered sector or many will simply not survive.”

The trade body wants to see further support offered to businesses.

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