me&u November Wrap Up: 5 headlines from the hospitality industry last month

November was a big month for hospitality around the globe! Check out me&u's roundup of the key headlines and news from the industry below.

The COVID-19 pandemic saw an uptake in contactless technology, with restaurants using QR codes to replace physical menus

QR code downloads have soared 750% and are showing no signs of slowing down. The uptake of QR code technology in restaurants is proving to be invaluable as a way to provide contactless service to guests. Industry experts believe that QR codes are here to stay in the hospitality sector, and see more opportunity to utilise the data from using QR codes to understand their consumers better.

Amid staff shortages and rising goods costs, hospitality venues are starting to raise the prices of menu items

Lingering effects from the pandemic have meant businesses are resorting to raising their own prices to combat price hikes of goods and services. Many businesses are struggling to find staff due to ongoing border issues both domestically and internationally, with the Restaurant and Catering Industry Association estimating that there are about 100,000 jobs that are currently vacant.

The hotel industry is bracing for bankruptcies as travel restrictions remain in place and government support dwindles

With the pandemic’s start in 2020, hotels understandably saw a dramatic decrease in occupancy rates as borders closed around the world. Thanks to government support and emergency bailouts, the hotel industry was able to remain afloat. As borders have reopened, life has begun to return to normal, and funding started to ease. Unfortunately, occupancy rates haven’t rebounded to normal levels, and hotel employers have struggled to hire back employees and the resurgence of COVID outbreaks.

UK Cafe working towards addressing the current 94% unemployment rate for young people with learning disabilities

Bianca Tavella, Founder and CEO of Fair Shot Cafe aims to transform the lives of young adults with learning disabilities by helping them gain the skills needed to begin a career in hospitality. They provide on-the-job training and place trainees in paid employment with partners and hope to advocate for a change in hiring policies that strives towards a more inclusive workforce.

UK government decides to not reimpose restrictions on hospitality and night-time economy settings amid Omicron variant concerns

The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) has welcomed the government’s decision to not reimpose COVID restrictions on the hospitality industry and night-time economy settings. The Government reintroduced a number of new, temporary restrictions to prevent the spread of the Omicron variant, including compulsory mask wearing in shops and other indoor settings such as banks and public transport.