With a curfew maintained at 9 p.m., the lunch service and aperitif between 6 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. are the privileged moments for the French to enjoy the terraces.
For 13 days, the French have been able to find their way back to the terraces of bars and restaurants… A little pleasure they have not been deprived of, despite mixed weather the first week of the reopening. “Attendance is satisfactory. The customers were there from the reopening, they are very happy to see us and us too. Bars and restaurants that were considered “non-essential” appeared to be extremely important to the French», Emphasizes Hubert Jan, president of the UMIH restoration.
A reopening which was not however sunny on the majority of France. In Île-de-France, the improvement in the weather was felt directly in attendance. “ We have seen a nice increase in attendance since Thursday, it’s incomparable », Affirms Hervé Becam, confederal vice-president of Umih. But not all regions have been placed in the same boat. In Montpellier for example: “ The first three days of reopening are those where we have worked the most. It was not sunny but it was not raining either, the weather did not prevent customers from coming », Says Benoit Provaux, manager of the Café de la Mer in Montpellier (Hérault).
The privileged lunch service and aperitif
With a curfew maintained at 9 p.m. until June 9, two moments are privileged by customers: the lunch service and the aperitif between 6 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. Attendance that would even exceed the levels of the reopening of June 2, 2020. “ We are on the same trend of attendance as last year or even higher. The French want to consume and rediscover moments of conviviality », Explains Hervé Becam from Umih.
And this despite a 50% welcome gauge for the terraces. A health rule that is difficult to be observed, however. “ Some professionals are exaggerating. This rule must be respected for health issues but also for a question of equality in the face of competition. », Insists the confederal vice-president of Umih.
Beyond the risk of closing establishments that do not comply with health rules, it is the terms of the second phase of reopening that could be revised even more drastically in the event of proven breaches, warned the presidents of professional organizations, UMIH, GNI, GNC and SNRTC from Friday May 21. In the Lyon metropolis, around ten establishments were notably put on formal notice and four administrative closures were carried out in the two days following the reopening.
Profitability achieved thanks to the solidarity fund
The attendance levels are still far from those of 2019. According to the group of bank cards, on Wednesday, May 19, traditional catering recorded a decrease of 20% in amount. Fast food, for its part, grew by 4%. The increases are calculated on the amounts paid by card or mobile CB and compared with the same period in 2019. A consumption that is not sufficient for bars and restaurants. “ It is profitable only thanks to state aid. Above all, it gives us pleasure to work again and find our customers », Recognizes Tiago Ferreira, restaurateur in the 2nd arrondissement of Paris.
From June 9, the terraces will be able to open to 100% and the interior of the establishments will have a capacity of 50% but at the same time, the solidarity fund will also begin its degression from June …