Restaurants have reported being left up to a third empty on Mother’s Day as no-shows continue to put businesses at risk.
Jackson Boxer, chef-patron of Brunswick House, in Vauxhall, London, has said that 46 guests who had booked for lunch and confirmed their intention to visit by telephone failed to take their seats.
Boxer tweeted: “We had 120 on the books, so over 1/3 didn’t show up. It’s a ludicrously high proportion, and yes, the only recent precedent was Valentine’s this year. To put this in perspective, the highest percentage of no-shows historically until this year was 20%. 2018 already outdoing 2017…”
The restaurant does not take bookings for parties in single figures.
The Parkers Arms, Newton in Bowland, Lancashire, experienced difficulties despite its booking system.
A tweet from the pub read: “Right Twitter friends have a table of five people cancelled at 12.30pm today for a 4.15pm booking. They paid in full in advance and were informed non-refundable on the day. Now they want a full refund what should I do? Could not resell table.”
Michelin-starred Mark Birchall, chef-patron of Moor Hall Restaurant with Rooms in Lancashire reported eight no-shows in his casual dining dining room, the Barn.
He tweeted to say he may have to start taking deposits in the restaurant adding: “If they cancelled in good time I could of sold it to one of the 66 on the wait list.”
Meanwhile, the 2016 Newcomer Catey winner Staith House in North Shields tweeted that five tables failed to show up.
The pub tweeted: “Another great Mother’s Day, however we can’t tell you how disheartening it is for the team for 5 tables not to honour their reservations without even the courtesy of a phone call! we have literally turned dozens and dozens of bookings away.”
While many chefs advocated a deposit scheme Fred Sirieix, general manager at Michelin-starred Galvin at Windows on Park Lane, London, said: “It happens all the time. Alas it is not likely to change. Overbooking is the only way to avoid the loss of business.”
No-shows have been causing restaurateurs a headache throughout the year with many saying they are “crippling” businesses.