Last Updated on Wednesday, 5 January, 2022 at 9:19 am by Andre Camilleri
Surveys done on overall sales in restaurants over the Christmas period were lower than those of the year 2020, particularly with regards to Christmas Eve dinners, the secretary of the Association of Catering Establishments, Matthew Pace, told The Malta Independent.
The survey showed that 70% of restaurants reported a lower sales week than 2020 while 89% stated that sales in the same week were lower than in 2019, mainly due to the many cancellations due to the rise in Covid-19 cases, said Pace.
4% of businesses in the catering industry decided not to open on Christmas day due to mass booking cancellations, he added.
“Despite this, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day proved to be far more positive compared to the Christmas week, and this is mainly due to the fact that despite the rise in positive cases, the vaccine has proved very effective with much lower hospital and ITU cases reported due to our large vaccination ratio,” Pace said.
He added that the reportedly low hospital and ITU cases have rekindled a sense of comfort within the public. “Contrary to what was anticipated, restaurants this year almost matched 2020 sales for the same festive dates,” said Pace.
Pace said that as an association, the survey for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day bookings is still being conducted, however, there is generally a more positive feel in contrast to the previous week.