Your latest instalment of articles and opinions from across the hospitality sector.
Continuing our theme of change in the hospitality sector, this edition we are looking at "Kitty Cash" and the "Doggy Dollar" - the incredible rise of pet ownership during COVID and what this could mean for the sector. The Pet Food Manufacturers' Association reported that over 3.2 million homes in the UK acquired a pet during the pandemic. That's a huge number of mostly four legged friends. Half of the new pet owners are in the Gen Y and Z cohort – an age group which is a major consumer of hospitality and eating out.
In the UK there are now 17 million pet-owning homes which is a huge market you are turning away with a "pets not welcome" sign outside the hotel. We have all heard about the "Grey Pound" – the high levels of disposable income of retirees. This is the "Pet Pound", "Kitty Cash" and the "Doggy Dollar" - the buying decision of millions of people is now affected by where is pet friendly - this is a major business opportunity for the sector post lockdown.
Businesses like Ennismore have already seen this market - designing The Hoxton as dog-friendly - and we expect many more hotel and F&B businesses to see the opportunity and welcome pets.
We can also see this as an opportunity to repurpose space to drive revenues. Dogs need grooming. They may also need looking after whilst you pop to the shops. Increasingly retailers and businesses are focussing on giving customers a reason to visit their store – offering grooming, allowing dogs or even a "pooch creche" must be worth considering – you can let your children play in the kids zone whilst you shop, so why not your dog?
Full disclosure, two of the three members of the editorial team have acquired a puppy during lockdown. Clearly, we are not alone.
The Thai tourism board has suggested that hotel rooms on the island of Phuket should be sold for $1 a night…
MPs call for cut in beer duty to save struggling pubs
Boxpark to open huge food hall on Bristol's harbourside
Hilton launches carbon neutral business meetings in Europe, Middle East and Africa
(Hotel News Resource)
UK eating out market to make 'full recovery' in 2022