Although cases are increasing in the UK, much still remains unknown about Omicron. However, it seems that one industry in particular is suffering in the face of this uncertainty. In recent times, as concerns about the new variant grow, the hospitality industry have experienced mass cancellations from both companies and individuals wishing to forgo their christmas plans this year.
This time last year saw most of the country facing tier four restrictions with residents only being allowed to celebrate Christmas with members of their own household and support bubbles. So for many restaurants and hotels, this year was intended to be one of recovery and progress. Instead, restaurants and hotels have spoken out about their worries for the festive period and described the impact the cancelled bookings have had on them.
Owner of Chutney Ivy restaurant, Shaf Islam, said: “We’re extremely apprehensive every day that goes by. Every day that goes by, there is more news about this new variant of the virus. This year was supposed to be – as it looked two three weeks ago – back to some sort of normality, to recuperate all of the losses we’ve incurred over the last couple of years but as a business owner and somebody in a sector that has suffered more than probably others, it is very worrying times ahead.”
Manish Sharma, of 1573 Bar & Grill said: “We have seen cancellations on the corporate front because if one of their employees tests positive, they have to self-isolate so yeah, we’ve seen a lot of enquiries and a few cancellations.”
By Gita Sarasia