Restaurants and food businesses reopened their doors this week under strict guidelines to combat risks related to the spread of COVID-19.
However, it has been a rough start for some in the industry, as owners face a “slow” period.
When Barbados TODAY visited the food court at Sky Mall, Haggatt Hall just after midday today, management of the restaurants said sales have been unfavourable so far.
“This is our first day back out but we are not seeing the customers as we would want to. We really hope that this does not continue into next week.
“I must say that the management of the mall has been following all the necessary guidelines to keep the environs clean in the food court and elsewhere, and we the restaurant owners are doing our part, and so all we can do now is to hope for the best,” the owner of one restaurant in Sky Mall said.
Meanwhile, Margarita Gorges, owner of Eats and Treats, also situated in the Mall, also informed Barbados TODAY that sales have been slow over the past couple days and noted that she believes this is primarily because regular customers who work at offices in the building and surrounding areas are now working from home.
“It has been very slow. It is now going to be a process for us to get back our regular customers. Our customers from the offices are now working home. And so we can’t have all our employees come to work because there is no customer around,” Gorges said.
A manager at a popular restaurant on the south coast said while the establishment reopened its doors for dining today, both its in-dining operation and the curbside pickup service have been slow.
“Due to the fact that there is limited disposable income to the Barbadian public it is now more a matter of urgency for people to save and make sure that every dollar is checked. But as of today we are trying the dining experience again and at the moment it is very slow, but we can’t honestly gauge off of the first day,” the manager said.
“There are few restrictions because of the curfew which is 8 p.m. tonight which means that all restaurants have to take their last seating around 5:30 to enable them to clean up, sanitize and get their staff home before the curfew hour and that puts us at a little disadvantage there.
“But we are grateful and we are going to keep fighting the fight and be able to provide a safe, secure, sanitized and good quality service to our customers. It is not just us, many businesses are being affected because of what is going on at this time,” he added.
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