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Preparing your hospitality business for the high season

Tue 12th Feb 19

Now can seem like an odd time to start thinking about the boost to business that late spring and summer can have for a hospitality business in the UK. In fact, though, it’s the best time to plan ahead and to make sure everything is ready to get you through the high season without a hitch.

In the UK, for most restaurants, cafes and bars, high season starts in the spring, usually around Easter, and lasts through the summer into early autumn. This isn’t just because the tourism industry takes off in the warmer months here. Most people are more likely to head out for the evening in the summer, when the evenings are longer, than in winter time.

As business gets busier for hospitality businesses, there’s less time available to tend to the day to day admin – to think about reviewing, renewing or replacing equipment, signage, processes and your business premises.

So, before the high season is upon us, it’s a good idea to make sure you’re properly prepared to take full advantage of the extra business it may bring.

Here are five things to think about before the high season starts:

1. Plan your people
Many hospitality businesses run on lower staff numbers during less busy months of trading. Now is the time to start advertising for summer staff, giving you time to find the best candidates and to train them before the rush starts.

2. Prepare for special occasions
Whether it’s a great sporting event or a royal wedding, there are some occasions that bring out the crowds. Making sure your business is set to take advantage of those occasions, with extra staff, supplies and special promotions, is a sure fire way to boost business.

3. Refresh your décor
While your business is less busy it’s a great time to delve in for a deep clean, to refresh the décor and to check that your appliances are running safely and efficiently. You could also review your furniture to make sure it’s up to scratch, and your signage to ensure it’s working effectively for you.

4. Research new menu options
Whether you have a restaurant or a bar, you may wish to review the options that are available on your menu, to supplement them with new seasonal tastes or to overhaul your selection altogether. You’ll need to update your physical menus to reflect any changes, too.

5. Work through the admin
It’s far easier to work through your admin while there’s less to keep you occupied. As well as your day to day paperwork, you could use this time to check your suppliers are still offering the best deals and to analyse last year’s trading to ensure you’re prepared for similar peaks and troughs.

This will also put you in a good position to review your insurance, making sure you have cover for every eventuality and that your seasonal increases are set at the most suitable levels.

Your insurance broker will be able to discuss the best options for your business, as well as any changes in cover that might now be available to you.

To find out more about insurance for your hospitality business with Ryan’s, call our Hospitality Division on 01473 343330 today.