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Survey

Understanding for no-show fees

69 per cent consider payment for unused reservations to be correct

More and more restaurants are charging guests if they don't turn up despite having a reservation. Most consumers can understand this step, as a survey shows.</p

<p>What should you do if you book a table in a restaurant and then can't turn up? For many, the answer is probably to call and cancel. But some guests don't do that. Instead, they simply don't turn up at the reserved time. This is not only annoying for others who would have been happy to have a free seat. This behaviour can be particularly unfair to restaurateurs, as it may result in a financial loss for them. More and more restaurants, especially in the upmarket sector, are therefore now charging so-called no-show fees. This means that guests are asked to pay if they do not turn up despite having made a reservation. A notice at the time of booking draws attention to this.</p

<p>A survey conducted by the opinion research institute Civey on behalf of web.de shows that more than two thirds of respondents (69 per cent) think it is right for restaurants to charge no-show fees. 5,000 people took part in the survey. 20 per cent of them said they had no sympathy for no-show charges, while eleven per cent were undecided on this question. It is noticeable that some younger respondents disagree with older respondents. Among participants aged between 18 and 29, just over a third (35 per cent) rate the fees as wrong. Only just over half (54 per cent) are sympathetic to restaurateurs. The survey reveals a trend: as age increases, Germans are more positive about the fee. For example, 73 per cent of 30 to 39-year-olds said they thought it was right for restaurants to charge for unused reservations.</p

<p>The German Hotel and Restaurant Association (Dehoga) has been observing the trend of reservations not being honoured for some time now. A survey conducted by Dehoga NRW in December 2022 showed that restaurateurs lose out when guests don't turn up. 78.3 per cent of respondents stated that they had lost up to ten per cent of their annual turnover due to no-shows. Over 20 per cent recorded even higher losses.

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