Why “no shows” are so damaging to independent pubs and restaurants

“No shows” is a hot topic at the moment. The number of people booking restaurant tables and not turning up without cancelling is rising.

I was chatting to Ben Jones, owner of The Olive Branch in Clipsham recently, who told me: “Sadly, we are seeing an increasing number of no shows. Pubs and restaurant like us make around 8% net profit and on average serve 35 to 50 customers each service. If a table of two does not show up, that’s 5% gone; if a table of 4 does not show up, that’s 10% gone (which means we make a loss during that service). I would just ask: please treat restaurants and pubs like you would any other important appointment. Our livelihoods depend upon it.”

Our lives are busy and sometimes it’s easy to forget, but those stats reveal the implications of this for small independents. Let’s all try to make no shows a thing of the past.

The Olive Branch

Matt Wright
The author:

Matt lives in Leicestershire with his wife, two kids and dog. He is passionate about British pubs, slow food and home brewing. He founded Great Food Club (originally as Great Food Magazine) in 2010 after being inspired by local producers near his home town of Melton Mowbray - Britain's 'Rural Capital of Food'.