The effects of COVID-19 linger on, many small businesses have already been forced to close down and many more are running at a loss. Local restaurants are among the most hard-hit businesses during this pandemic. Restaurants were forced to limit seating capacity early on, then had to adapt to outdoor dining only, and finally forced to a pickup and delivery model only. Not to mention that the lunch hour demand has all but disappeared due to the high number of people working from home. Even those locations, like our favourite Italian restaurant, that have managed to stay afloat through all of this have been forced to lay staff off and run on razor-thin margins.
As other businesses begin to reopen and the economy is gradually bouncing back, all hands must be on deck to resuscitate local neighbourhood restaurants.
Here are some of the ways you too can support local restaurants.
Buy Gift Cards
One way to support local restaurants without being physically able to dine out, is to buy restaurant gift cards for friends, family, and even yourself for future use. This will assure local restaurants of your trust in their continued business beyond COVID-19. They will gladly welcome and provide you and your loved ones with a well-deserved night out after the pandemic.
Pickup Your Order Instead of Using a Delivery Service
Meal delivery services are easy and convenient, but they eat into a restaurant’s profit in a big way. Instead of jumping on an app to order your meal, call your local restaurant directly and use their in-house delivery if they have one, or opt to pick up your meal yourself. You will be helping local restaurants keep their profits, instead of handing them off to the delivery companies.
Contribute to Causes Raised by Local Restaurants
Due to the hardship brought by the coronavirus pandemic, many restaurants have resorted to creating GoFundMe causes to stay afloat. You can support these local restaurants to survive this difficult time. Go through the GoFundMe pages and support your favourite local restaurants. Every dollar counts to help keep hope alive, and survive the pandemic to serve you in the near future.
Purchase Goods from Local Restaurants
Some restaurants have a line of merchandise from where they raise more funds to keep the restaurants running. Support them by checking out and buying their goods. This includes merchandise such as t-shirts, mugs, and keychains as well as prepared food items such as jarred sauces and preserves.
Leave Positive Reviews and Engage with Restaurants’ Posts on Social Media
This one won’t cost you a thing. Take the time to leave a positive review for your favourite Italian restaurant or your local pizza spot. People in the neighbourhood that are perhaps looking for a new place to tryout depend on these reviews to guide their ordering. Engage with the posts of these local restaurants on social media helps improve their online presence and can boost their businesses. If nothing else the staff and owners of these establishments will appreciate reading about your positive experience and will appreciate the support during these tough times.