The Secret Restaurateur: Tis the season for the festive no-show

Our industry insider ponders just what can be done about a perennial problem - guests who don’t show up at all, or who do show up, but with less people than promises

“Punters don’t do a vanishing act out of malice or to deliberately cost restaurants money, but rather because they see no-shows as a victimless crime”

“There’s a grief that can’t be spoken. There’s a pain that goes on and on. Empty chairs at empty tables.....”

And with that little gift to the Les Misérables fans among you, let’s look foward to the festive season, a time that even curmudgeons like myself (mostly) look forward to. It provides a badly-needed boost of business for restaurants, who need to set them up for the quiet months that follow.

Christmas 2022 won’t be ...