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How to register your establishment for the Eat Out to Help Out coronavirus hospitality recovery scheme

The government announced a new scheme to help the hospitality sector recover from lost business during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Under ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ the government are funding a 50% discount for diners eating in participating restaurants. It forms part of the economic recovery package now that coronavirus lockdown conditions are beginning to ease.

Is my restaurant eligible for the Eat Out to Help Out scheme?

Only ‘dining in’ establishments can register as a participating restaurant under the scheme. This means that you’re eligible providing the food and drink that you sell is for “immediate consumption on the premises”. You must also have registered as a food business with your local authority on or before 7th July 2020.

Sadly, this does mean that takeaways, private caterers, room service, and dining packages (such as dinner cruises) are all excluded.

What does the Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme cover?

The scheme discounts 50%, up to a maximum discount of £10 per person for children and adults. Customers have unlimited use of the offer during the scheme, with discounts only available on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays.

Alcohol sales are not covered by the scheme, and you will still be required to pay any VAT that you charge.

How do restaurants claim the reimbursement amount?

The reclaim scheme won’t be available until 7th August 2020. From that date you will be able to claim your reimbursement through your Government Gateway account.

You can make your claim on a weekly basis, but you must be registered for the scheme to do so!

Registering your restaurant for the Eat Out to Help scheme

Application to the scheme is made using a Government Gateway account. If you don’t already have one, you’ll need to set one up.

If you’re registering 25 establishments or fewer, HMRC ask that the details for each one be provided. You can provide a website link to register more than 25, as long as each of those taking part are listed.

Apply to register your restaurant for the Eat Out to Help Out scheme here.

You’ll be allowed to promote this to your customers if you are approved.

When does the Eat Out to Help Out scheme start?

Restaurants can only offer a discount under the scheme once they are registered. The discount period begins on 3rd August 2020, and reimbursements can be claimed from 7th August. The ‘Eat Out’ discount service closes 30th September 2020.

Do I need to keep records?

As ever with HMRC, keeping records is essential! You’re required to record the following for each day the scheme is used, and for each of your establishments using it:

Visit our information hub to learn more about help available for businesses dealing with COVID-19. To talk to an advisor about our online accounting services, call 020 3355 4047 or get an instant quote online.

About The Author

Elizabeth Hughes

A content writer specialising in business, finance, software, and beyond. I'm a wordsmith with a penchant for puns and making complex subjects accessible.

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