Mumbai: Hospitality sector launches #GoDirect campaign

Amid the rapid surge in number of COVID-19 cases across the state, those in the hospitality sector are again facing trouble. With administration imposing stricter norms, footfall of patrons in restaurants and hotels have started to decline. As a result, apex bodies of hospitality sectors have come up with the #GoDirect campaign, to appeal Mumbaikars for supporting those employed in the hospitality sectors.

The campaign is being supported by affiliated hotels and restaurants of Federation of Hotels and Restaurants Association of India (FHRAI) with its western India counterpart – Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) along with other regional associations affiliated with FHRAI. FHRAI is the apex hospitality association of India.

As part of this campaign, FHRAI have urged patrons to order food and book hotels directly from their own website or by calling them, instead of booking or ordering via aggregator apps.

Members of the associations stated, the hospitality sector is on the brink of collapse and this is the only way possible for recovery.

"For every order or booking made through aggregator apps, we lose between 20 to 30 per cent as commission, hence we request our patrons to directly visit the websites of hotels or restaurants for booking rooms or for ordering food," said, Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Vice President, FHRAI.

"Even if customers do switch to this practice temporarily for the next few months, it will help the hospitality industry immensely,” Kohli added.

Surendra Kumar Jaiswal, vice president of FHRAI stated that by providing accommodation and helping the state set quarantine facilities, the hospitality industry has been on the frontline but it neither got due credit and adequate support from the government.

"If customers choose to order or book directly then we will be able to save significant amount of revenues, which could be used in reappointing redundant employees and paying utility bills,” said Jaiswal.

Also owners of Banquet halls informed, in the past two weeks, many of their clients have cancelled last minute bookings.

"After reports of BMC and police conducting raids at hotels and banquet halls emerged, our patrons have started getting afraid and called off our bookings," said Amir Mistry, member of Mumbai Traders Association and owner of a banquet hall in Borivli.

"Last year we had suffered immense loss, many of us went into debt now that we have started to recover our losses, the second wave has hit us again," Mistry added.

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