The Eat Out to Help Out scheme will allow people to eat out half price in August, in an effort to boost the struggling sector. Chancellor Rishi Sunak unveiled the move in his so-called mini-Budget on Wednesday, July 8, in which he laid out plans to help Britain’s economy recover from the coronavirus pandemic. Mr Sunak said the plan aimed to get “customers back into restaurants, cafes and pubs” while “protecting the 1.8million people who work in them”.
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Under the scheme, people who dine out from Monday to Wednesday in August will receive a 50 percent discount on the price of their meals, up to the value of £10 per person.
This means that a family of four dining out can save £40 on a meal worth £80.
The rest of the bill is subsidised by the Government in an effort to help restaurants and bars.
The scheme is aimed at encouraging more people to go out and eat out more often, to keep pubs, restaurants and cafes afloat after more than three months of being closed.
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Announcing the move, the Chancellor said: “This moment is unique. We need to be creative.
“To get customers back into restaurants, cafes and pubs, and protect the 1.8million people who work in them, I can announce today that, for the month of August, we will give everyone in the country an Eat Out to Help Out discount.”
The Eat Out to Help Out discount does not apply to alcohol, even as part of a bill that includes food.
However, the scheme does include discounts for soft drinks.
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Announcing the programme, Chancellor Sunak said: “I know people are cautious about going out.
“But we would not have lifted the restrictions if we did not think we could do so safely.
“Each week in August, businesses can then claim the money back, with the funds in their bank account within five working days.”
You will not need any kind of voucher or coupon to take part in the scheme.
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Businesses wanting to get involved will need to register on the Government’s website before being able to advertise and offer the discount.
The discount applies in any business that serves food, and has signed up.
It does not matter whether the restaurant in question belongs to a large chain of brands or is an independent business.
The discount only applies to eating out, and cannot be used for takeaways.
The move, which Mr Sunak described as being in “support of restaurants and the people who work in them”, is expected to boost the UK’s hospitality sector, which is worth £130billion and is the third largest employer in the country, representing nine percent of jobs in the UK.
Russell Nathan, senior partner at accountancy firm HW Fisher, said: “Our restaurants, pubs, shops and hotels are struggling.
“This is a timely announcement from the Government as businesses are in desperate need of a clear action plan.
“It is vital we see the hospitality industry back up and running, and these measures announced today will provide an essential lifeline for many UK businesses.”
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