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Hospitality in the Winter - What Changes? Posted by Smart Rota on 2nd December 2019

The hospitality is an ever-changing industry and as the seasons change and the months get colder, even more things and factors change in your restaurant, bar, café or hotel.

You need to prepare yourself for the change in weather, the rise of customers and the festivity of the season.

Prepare for Christmas

With Winter comes one big event – Christmas! That means it’s time to think about what you’re going to change about your business that aligns with the festive spirit. Consider what decorations you’re going to put up, that won’t become a hazard to guests.

Also, will you have a Christmas party, or host a Christmas lunch?

The New Year

Will you host a New Year’s Eve party? Or will you close for the New Year’s Event? It’s a big and profitable time, but it requires a lot of planning and dedication your end. People will expect a grand and incredible time if you’re promising one with high priced tickets.

Prepare for the cold

If you manage a rooftop bar, then think about how everything will change when the weather gets colder. You could install heaters, or include snug blankets on the chairs, so guests can wrap themselves up warm. Consider getting double-glazed windows and making sure the doors do not let in a chill when they’re shut. Make sure your heating system is working properly too – there’s nothing worse than cold guests!

Closing times

As the nights get darker and the winter chill sets in, you may lose business later in the evening. People may want to get home, instead of stopping off for a coffee in your café. Depending on your business, you may want to shut earlier if you’ve noticed in previous years that you get quieter in December. However, for pubs and restaurants you may want to extend your hours to accommodate the holidays!

Hot drinks

If you’re a pub or restaurant, you may want to offer a different range of drinks for the winter period. Many of the major chains bring out festive drinks with different kinds of syrups – gingerbread lattes, pumpkin spiced cappuccinos and cinnamon hot chocolates. Think festive flavours matched with everyone’s favourite hot beverages.

It’s also the time for mulled wine and cider, so your pub business could invest in these hot alcoholic drinks for the season. There’s also a range of different gins and rums that you could buy in for the festive season – try to find some Christmas themed spirits and alcoholic beverages that will intrigue your guests.

A different menu

Winter produces a different palate than summer – people may opt for warming foods like soup, stew and casseroles, instead of light salads and cold dishes. This means it’s time for a menu change – roasts on a Sunday, tomato soup or prawn cocktails for starters and a delicious stew range for the main course weekdays!

Prepare for big bookings

Christmas is the time for cheer and parties! Prepare for big groups of work colleagues, friends and family members visiting your restaurant. Consider hiring more staff if you know you’re going to be busy too!

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