Over half of UK restaurants raising prices to cope with energy costs

by John Jones | Oct 26, 2023

UK-based restaurant booking software business – Favouritetable – has written to Energy Minister, The Rt Hon Graham Stuart, to raise the issue of increasing energy costs for the hospitality sector after surveying its clients to find out if growing bills are inhibiting their businesses.

As part of its ‘Big Question’ series – an initiative aimed at getting to the heart of issues that inform restaurant owners, Favouritetable asked over 350 of its clients and other UK restaurateurs if they had raised their prices due to current energy costs.

Some 52% of respondents reported that ‘yes,’ they have increased and passed on rising energy costs to their customers. Comments returned by restaurateurs about the impacts on their business included: 

“I hate to raise prices, but I had to.”

“We have reduced our opening hours and are now closed one day a week.”

“Not yet, but it will happen this winter. Our energy bills have tripled and we are now averaging £200 per day. That’s two people’s salaries and they may have to be dropped to cover the others. If we raise prices again we are going to out-price our guests. There should be a complete cut on VAT on all hospitality businesses for the next two years.”

“Our average monthly electricity bill has gone from £1,200 to £3,800. We can’t afford it and now owe British Gas a lot of money. We also haven’t been able to pay our VAT bill and owe thousands.”

Jaipal Yadav, MD of Favouritetable, said: 

“The subject of increased energy costs is clearly causing significant challenges for an already under-pressure hospitality sector, and I have written to Graham Stuart expressing our grave concern that more than half of the restaurants we work with appear to be struggling against this pressure.

“We have already seen data earlier this year indicating that UK pubs and restaurant average bills have surged by 81% owing to increased energy and food costs, and our findings add further fuel to this fire.

“We are strongly encouraging the Government to take action to support this crucial £17.8 billion pound sector.”

You can read our letter to the Energy Minister here.