It’s been fantastic to see further lifting of lockdown restrictions in the UK over the last week. With scenes of pubs and restaurants opening their doors for indoor dining, as well as holiday makers jetting off to sunnier climes, it feels like we have taken a significant step towards pre-pandemic life.
It’s no secret that food and hospitality businesses have been among the worst hit by Covid-19. Restaurants and pubs were the first to shut when lockdown hit. All had to adapt to the fact that customers could no longer visit and eat inside their venues.
Many took it upon themselves to rebrand, regroup and relaunch as takeaway services to encourage continuing trade. Indeed, according to market research company NPD Group, in the first 10 months of 2020, food delivery in the UK increased by 14% and the spend by customers increased by 40%. Delivery services like Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats were the true winners, profiting from the pandemic, and seeing their business expand by over 20%.
Much like the boom in online shopping, it was only a matter of time until restaurants and cafes diversified their revenue streams to ensure customers did not forget about them. Many larger chain restaurants took the innovative step of launching delivery-only brands, such as Pizza Express’ Mac & Wings, catering to the rapidly increasing demand for a completely virtual takeaway experience.