The Most Important Decision of our Lives

Monica Or, columnist and Hospitality Consultant at Star Quality Hospitality Consultancy discusses how the EU Referendum could impact hospitality..

On the 23rd June 2016 the British voting public will be making a decision that could change the world of hospitality as we know it. The decision as to whether we remain in the European Union or leave will have a major impact on how we run our businesses.

Have a look at your workforce today and you will notice how culturally diverse your employees are. By being part of the European Union we have been able to employ skilled employees who have added value to our businesses. Have a look at your menus and you will see how your chefs have been able to be more adventurous and create dishes with ingredients sourced far and near. Have a look at your guests, they come from all over the globe to stay in your hotels and eat your food.

Whether Britain stays in the EU or leaves, will impact how we currently work, trade and the relationships we have with our European neighbours. Although this is not just a personal decision, this a decision that has to be made looking at the bigger picture of how it will affect our industry.

Simon Calder reports that UK tourism accounts for one-eleventh of our GDP and provides more than three million jobs. According to the professional services firm Deloitte, 63 per cent of inbound holidaymakers to Britain are from countries of the European Union. Visitors from the EU will top nine million this year.

According to a study carried out by Travelzoo, one-third of Italians and Spaniards, 30 per cent of Germans and a quarter of French holidaymakers said a Leave vote would make them less inclined to travel to the UK. One in eight Americans and one in ten Canadians also said they would be less likely to come to a post-Brexit Britain.

Britain joined the Economic Union in 1973 and since then it has developed in to the European Union as it became formally known in 1992. That relationship has been built upon and nurtured. Leaving such a relationship could cause irreparable damage. No one knows what will happen if Britain were to leave the EU, it is all speculation.

Taking the scaremongering out of the picture, what you need to consider is how your vote will impact labour and recruitment, legislation, tourism and the economy.

The real impact of the resulting vote will only reveal itself in the months and years to come. The British Hospitality Association will be discussing the result at their Hospitality and Tourism Summit on 27th June 2016.

About Monica Or: As the founder of Star Quality Hospitality Consultancy, Monica specialises in working operationally with the owner/managers of independent hotels and restaurants focusing on their business structure and service delivery. She is the author of ‘Star Quality Hospitality – The Key to a Successful Hospitality Business’ an Amazon best seller.
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