While some cancelled their reservations ahead of time, around one in 12 (8%) have admitted to being a no-show after failing to tell their venue they would not be visiting, CGA’s latest Consumer Pulse survey has found.
With outside space at pubs and restaurants a premium, visitors have been forced to plan their visits in advance, with nearly three quarters (73%) of those who went out during the first week saying they had reserved tables before doing so, the research found.
However, the unpredictably of the spring weather, with consumers deciding last minute that conditions aren’t good enough to sit outside and customers over-booking—reserving places at multiple venues with the intention of cancelling or skipping some of them – has led to problems with no-shows, says CGA.
Its report found that 23% of no-shows either forgot to cancel, with 13% saying that they ‘couldn’t be bothered’ to do so. More than a quarter (27%) claimed they had tried to cancel bookings but weren’t able to reach the venue, while 17% said they were embarrassed about cancelling.
This suggests some operators might need to do more to help consumers cancel, and give themselves a chance to replace lost bookings, says CGA.
“Pubs, bars and restaurants have worked so hard to reopen under tough conditions and with limited space; the last thing they need are cancellations and, even worse, no-shows,” says Karl Chessell, CGA’s business unit director, hospitality operators and food EMEA.
“It’s a tricky problem to solve, but bookings are going to be at the core of operations for a long time to come. Venues may need to consider and communicate new policies around their reservation terms, and make it as easy as possible for people to cancel so they can reallocate valuable space.”