With norms relaxed, more hotels may begin operations

Hotels permitted to accept online, phone orders till 8 p.m.

A few hotels and eateries here that had downed shutters following the restrictions imposed in view of the COVID-19 situation are set to reopen, with the hope that relaxations in operational timings announced by the government on Friday may revive business prospects.

“Not even 5% of the hotels in Ernakulam were functioning following the nation-wide lockdown. With the government permitting home delivery of food from hotels and bakeries till 8 p.m., our members have been calling us from Friday evening onwards, asking whether they could open the outlets again,” said T.J. Manoharan, secretary of the Ernakulam wing of Kerala Hotel and Restaurant Association (KHRA).

The government order had stated that hotels could accept orders online and also via mobile phones until 8 p.m. However, delivery and allied catering operations, including cooking, should stop by 9 p.m.

“The majority of online orders used to come in the evening and the extension of the timings up to 8 p.m. may help in improving the number of orders. Most of the hotels will have a limited menu due to the decline in sales after the lockdown was announced,” said Mr. Manoharan.

KHRA general secretary G. Jayapal pointed out that the relaxation in timings for home delivery might not lead to the reopening of many hotels. “Business remains sluggish. But a few may open anticipating that sales may improve as the restrictions ease by next week,” he said.

Hotel owners said they would continue to abide by the regulations prescribed by the Health authorities. Customers will be asked to maintain a safe distance while waiting for takeaways from food counters.

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Printable version | Jul 3, 2020 5:02:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/with-norms-relaxed-more-hotels-may-begin-operations/article31259257.ece

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