NW hospitality sector launches crusade to stop the devastating effects of no shows

– Figures reveal it costs the industry £16bn a year
– Operators reveal that 25% of online bookings do not turn up
– This Thursday’s social media Thunderclap #NOMORENOSHOWS set to raise consumer awareness of issue with message ‘its ok to cancel – just let us know!’

A new campaign – #NOMORENOSHOWS – is set to launch this week to stop the devastating effects of customers not turning up to bar and restaurant bookings as hospitality operators reveal that the issue is costing the sector £16 billion a year, with around 25% of online bookings simply not turning up.

As the sector slowly tries to get back on its feet following the devastating effects of Covid-19, hospitality bosses are warning that the no-shows could prove to be just as crippling as the global pandemic itself.

At a time when many bars and restaurants are having to operate at a reduced capacity to honour social distancing, even just a small number of no shows can mean the difference between business success or failure.

Today, Sixty Eight People, a hospitality recruitment consultancy, along with Antonia Lallement from Gusto Italian are unveiling their #NOMORENOSHOWS campaign in Greater Manchester in an attempt to spread awareness of the issue amongst consumers; in hope that it will spark a change in behaviour.

Abi Dunn of hospitality recruitment business Sixty Eight People, says: “Our beloved hospitality industry is fighting for its life after the catastrophic events of the last three months. We are slowly getting back on our feet but let’s be blunt – with already reduced capacity we simply won’t survive if the current level of no shows continue.

“British people tend to feel embarrassed about cancelling. We want to say it’s OK to cancel, in fact you’re helping us out! In no other area of business is it acceptable to renege on a contract in this way. We have to change the way people behave and the notion that no shows are acceptable. Greater Manchester is a metropolis of bars, dining, coffee hang outs, gastronomic delights and nights to remember. Please help them all stay open!”

The movement starts with a social media ‘thunderclap’ on Thursday 16th at 10am and hopes to reach as many potential customers across the region as possible, so that the process of cancelling your table in advance becomes as natural as leaving a tip for good service.

Hospitality leaders, operators and employees from all around Greater Manchester will be posting the #NOMORENOSHOWS tile on Instagram, calling on their own network of customers, family & friends to do their bit by sharing the image and following three simple steps:

1. Plans change. That’s cool. Just let us know.
2. Rebook – we still love you.
3. Encourage friends and family to do the same.

The #NOMORENOSHOWS movement has already gained support from the region’s hospitality leaders.

Thom Hetherington, CEO of Holden Media Ltd, said: “A ‘one-size fits all’ approach of deposits or similar won’t work for every restaurant, and the brilliance of this campaign is that it isn’t prescriptive, it leaves spaces for individual operators to put their own processes in place. ‘No showing’ has to become socially and morally unacceptable behaviour amongst diners everywhere. It damages businesses and can cost peoples’ jobs, and no one should want to have that on their conscience. With a large but close-knit hospitality industry, including some very powerful voices, I think Manchester is perfectly placed to lead the charge with a campaign for no more no shows.”

Sacha Lord, Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester Combined Authority, added: “As the hospitality sector slowly starts to reopen, many are operating at a reduced capacity. We already know how tight margins are with restaurants, but sadly over the last couple of weeks, many operators are reporting no shows on bookings. With the sector already on it’s knees, we need to support the industry and help wherever we can. If you want to cancel your booking, that’s totally fine, but please let the restaurant know, the earlier the better, so that they can rebook your table.”

Anyone wishing to show their support for the sector and receive the tile and message ahead of Thursday should email abi@sixtyeightpeople.com or DM any of Sixty Eight People’s social channels.