Hospitality firms ‘largely worried’ for New Year’s trade after outage

Hospitality leaders say commerce at venues could weaken during the crucial New Year’s Eve after sales were disrupted by strike action.

However, there are signs of optimism amid more bookings and strong demand for other areas of the industry during the festive season.

The Night Industrialists’ Association, which has more than 1,400 members, including nightclubs, bars and casinos, said that although there was no industrial action on the transport network on New Year’s Eve, it was concerned that the strikes on other days would sprout. Effect.

Michael Kill, CEO of the trade organization, told the PA news agency: “Pressures of industrial action and cost inflation have greatly reduced trade across the night economy, and many are greatly concerned that New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day will be further impacted by this. strikes.”



No doubt we will see a lot of business and job losses in January due to the Government’s inaction.

Michael Kill, Night Industries Association

Members of the RMT union joined the strike action on 26 December and will start new action from 3 January.

Meanwhile, TSSA members on the Great Western Railroad and West Midlands Trains joined the strikes on Wednesday and Thursday.

Mr Kill added: “The industry lost an estimated £2bn in trade, with most of them losing up to 50% of trade during the critical festive operating period that they rely heavily on to see them through to early 2023.

“The government’s delayed announcement of the extension of energy aid has left many facing further uncertainty and once again unable to plan.

“No doubt we will see a lot of business and job losses in January due to Government inaction.”

Other trade body UKHospitality warned earlier this week that bookings for New Year’s Eve seemed “soft”, but said the industry remains positive.



The hospitality industry remains positive and we encourage people to go out and celebrate at local hospitality businesses.

Kate Nicholls, BKKaccommodation

Kate Nicholls, chief executive officer, said: “Bars, restaurants and nightclubs are always the perfect places to ring in the New Year and get together with friends and loved ones, and this year is no different.

“Despite recent trade cuts and challenges such as rail strikes and the rising cost of living, many venues across the country have spent a great deal of time, effort and resources planning their New Year’s festivities to accommodate guest reservations during one of the busiest times of the year.

“The hospitality industry remains positive and we encourage people to go out and celebrate at local hospitality businesses.”

The latest data from OpenTable points to a positive Christmas so far despite strike action by rail workers and pressure on consumer budgets.

He said two-week bookings through December 27 were up 35% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019.

This was particularly strong last week, with bookings increasing by an average of 57% compared to three years ago.

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