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ALL ABOUT: ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ Scheme & VAT Cuts

9th Jul 2020

The Government has posted the details on its Eat Out to Help Out Scheme to offer a discount to diners and encourage them to eat out at restaurants. Without this, it is predicted that many great restaurant businesses would fail.

How does Eat Out to Help Out work

Customers, in effect, need to do nothing other than to ensure to dine at registered restaurants on the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme. This will:

  • offer a 50% discount, up to a maximum of £10 per person, to diners for food or non-alcoholic drinks to eat or drink in
  • be available all day, every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3 to 31 August 2020

Restaurant will then claim the money back from the government.

There is no limit to the number of times diners can use the offer during the period of the scheme. 

Alcohol and service charges are excluded from the offer, as are takeaway services.

Which restaurants will be included

Enter your postcode on the Gov. website to see all restaurants near you who are included: FIND RESTAURANT HERE

Restaurants can sign up to the scheme if they:

  • sell food for immediate consumption on the premises
  • provide their own dining area or share a dining area with another establishment for eat-in meals
  • were registered as a food business before July 7th

The places that can’t be included are:

  • establishments that only offer takeaway food or drink
  • catering services for private functions
  • hotels that provide room service only
  • dining services (such as packaged dinner cruises)
  • mobile food vans or trailers


So what happens next

Business can register after July 13th and will reportedly then instantly receive a registration reference number – needed for them to claim the reimbursement.

Restaurants can then download promotional materials to help promote their inclusion in the scheme – The Luxury Restaurant Club will keep you posted on who is taking part, but a list of registered establishments will be available to the public too.

When can diners start to get the discount

Registered restaurants cannot offer discounts before August 3rd. It is expected that restaurants will offer the reductions during the whole of their opening hours, on every opening day, and for all qualifying food and drink.

There is no reason, as long as restaurants cleared funds (excluding service charge and alcoholic beverages) are above £10 per person, that the restaurants can not provide the offer together with Luxury Restaurant Club privileges, although it is best to check ahead of dining on policy. For reference, restaurants are not able to make claims before August 7th, and they are advised they will receive their claimed reimbursements within 5 days.

Will it be in the form of vouchers

NO! Others sites keep mentioning vouchers and they are incorrect. It will be more a record keeping process at the restaurant, tallied for your reference on your restaurant check. Restaurants will simply need to keep records of the:

  • total number of people who have used the scheme in their establishment
  • total value of transactions under the scheme
  • total amount of discounts given

What about VAT reductions


The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, also announced a cut from the standard rate of VAT (value added tax) of 20% to 5% for the next six months – July 15th, 2020 to January 12th, 2021. This cut will apply to all food, non alcoholic drinks, accommodation and attractions. But don’t expect all of these reductions to be passed on. Some establishments may reduce menu and accommodation pricing, but remember – this is an industry on the verge of collapse, suffering from enforced reduced covers and additional costs involved to deliver the service. Our bet is it is more likely it will be used to repair their finances until they are able to increase covers.

Beyond the August discounting

We are not using this platform to sell anything – far from it. The Luxury Restaurant Guide & Club is our unique commitment on how to dine out wisely at the best places. We will continue to be here to support restaurants (for free) and share exclusive promotions to subscribing Luxury Restaurant Club members – that’s over 30,000 gourmet members who have been saving an average £47.50 per dining visit. £10 per head is an incredible promotion to offer across the board from Government coffers and it underlines (we trust, for August) the impetus great offers can have.

To discover all the finest restaurants, news, insights and offers download the free Luxury Restaurant Guide app.

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