This Monday is -Re-opening Day’ for hundreds of hotels and thousands of restaurants, cafes and bars throughout the country.
Most operators are confident that they can work within the restraints imposed by Covid 19, but consumer response to the re-openings remain uncertain.
In line with Failte Ireland Guidelines, hotels re-opening to-day have introduced a range of protocols including on-line booking, contactless check-in, social distancing in public areas, room service and deep cleaning of accommodation. Extensive staff training has also been completed in many hotels.
Hotels expect to operate at around 30% occupancy initially, but his is likely to rise to over 50% in the coming weeks. Higher occupancy levels are expected later this month as the holiday season approaches its peak. Failte Ireland has launched a major home holidays campaign with intensive advertising on tv, radio, print and social media.
Restaurants can also re-open from to-day, but it is uncertain how many will do so. Some operators say that they will be unable to run a viable business within the social-distancing guidelines, which stipulate two-metre distancing except where this is not physically possible.
Pubs which re-open to-day must operate as restaurants and will not be permitted to allow customers to stand at the bar or mingle. They must charge a minimum of €9 for a meal.