Firstly want to let you know that I am writing this post on 18th March 2020 from Worcestershire UK. Just wanted to put that out there as so much is changing on a daily basis so things may change by the time I actually post it or you read it! I am also not claiming to be an expert in what is going on at the moment so this is purely my thoughts and feelings as somebody working in the hospitality industry.
Coronavirus has become an all consuming infest as it’s not only affecting our health but our social lives, our economy and our livelihood. There are so many different things I could talk about when it comes to the coronavirus and how our government are dealing with it but I want to take time to write about The Hospitality Industry during this time.
I work as a chef for a small independent cafe and I’m currently writing this when I was supposed to be at work today. My cafe have decided to limit the amount of staff working during this difficult time to ensure limited human contact and more financial gain during this time. I do not blame my company at all for me not working today as they have been forced into this position. However the government do have a massive part to play in this. The government made an announcement of Monday 15th March telling people to avoid restaurants, pubs, cafes e.t.c for the foreseeable future to prevent the spread of the virus, although they didn’t force these places to shut. Instead they hope for a large number of the places to voluntarily close. This may be possible for larger chains to take the financial hit, but for smaller businesses this is just not possible. Especially when we don’t have any idea how long this going to last. If companies within the hospitality industry were forced to close, they would able to claim on their insurance and pay their staff their wages during this time.
This being said, this is not what’s happening and currently hundreds (if not thousands) of people like me are being told not to come into work and therefore not being paid and will take a financial hit, rather than the big insurance companies that will be able to take the hit. Yes insurance companies would make a loss but they would quickly recuperate their money afterwards as everyone would be on high alert when making arrangements to travel, life insurance, medical insurance e.t.c.
I could sit hear all day and complain but in all honesty, I don’t blame one single person for the consequences I’m facing. In this uncertain time it is truly difficult to know what is the right decision. Do you truly know what the right decision is? Personally I think if businesses were forced to shut I think that would be better but that is just my opinion.
Obviously my thoughts are also fuelled by the fact I love my job! I am very lucky that I get to say that as I know not many people do but I truly enjoy and look forward to working. I love being able to serve people good quality food that they can enjoy and experience. I love the people I work with and the friendly environment I work in. Unfortunately, it is a possibility that this may have to come to an end if things continues the way they are. I’m not saying that there will be not restaurants and bars left after the coronavirus but a fair amount of your favourite independent and smaller places may have to face the reality of shutting down forever. If this is something you are concerned about I plead please support local businesses! Here are some things you can do to support your favourite places:
– Buy gift vouchers for later use. If you don’t want to dine in your favourite places with everything going on, buy a gift voucher to use once this all blows over. They will really appreciate the money during this difficult time and will be happy to see you once they are back to running normally.
– Use delivery services. A lot of places now offer a delivery service or are websites such as just eat or deliveroo so make use of them! Some places have also set up a delivery service especially for this difficult time so check social media to see your options.
– Leave a review. If you can’t spare any money at the moment, leave a review or support them on their social media to boost their awareness and that will make things a lot easier when things are back to normal. They will be able to start back with a strong reputation and regular customers.
– Stay on social media and blog websites. A lot places can earn additional income through social media exposure or website traffic through ad revenue so keep visiting your favourite places’ websites! This will also help them appear higher on google which will also make things a lot easier when things are back to normal.
Feel free to put your thoughts in the comments below and if you need anyone to talk to during this difficult time feel free to private message me on all of my social media @joyfulanddeliciouseating. My thoughts go out to everyone during this time and hope you all stay safe. Hope all my fellow chefs, waitresses, bartenders e.t.c come out of the situation stronger and better – we’ve got this!