Half term is fast approaching and parents are constantly looking for new ways to entertain and spend time with their children. However when it comes to eating out during the school break there are many reasons parents will avoid taking their family out for a meal. Whether it be for lunch or dinner, you could be taking advantage of half term by attracting families to dine at your restaurant. Combat these common reasons why parents avoid eating out to fill your restaurant with families and extra profits!
For some taking their family out for a meal is simply too expensive. Make it less costly by offering half price food one day of the week or have a day where children eat for free. Although you are discounting food, the promotion will attract families who wouldn’t usually dine out or wouldn’t usually choose your restaurant.
Parents are increasingly taking nutrition into account when they are choosing places to eat and many will avoid your restaurant if your children’s menu is not up to scratch. Set yourself apart from other restaurants by offering a children’s menu with a variety of foods and without the standard chicken nuggets or fish fingers. Parents not only want their children to enjoy their meal but also want it to have nutritional value. Revamp your children’s menu with items from the regular menu but in smaller portions, alternatively include a serving of salad or vegetables with children’s meals.
When dining out as a family, especially with younger children, there is always the risk of kids getting bored whilst waiting for their meal. Providing distractions such as colouring in placemats or activity packs are a great way to help parents and can even be a way of promoting your restaurant brand. For older kids creativity is key, but one idea is to offer a booklet of origami for kids to learn to make art from their napkins.
For fear that their children will disrupt other patron’s parents are known to avoid dining out. Make your restaurant family friendly by altering the floor plan to have a section dedicated to family tables. Increase table sizes in this section and allow space for high chairs to be added to tables if required.
Staff reactions to families, especially those with younger children, can also determine where parents decide to eat. Ensure staff members welcome families as they would any other customer. Parents are more likely to return to a restaurant, and recommend it to others parents, when they have experienced accommodating service.
Attracting families, for both lunch and dinner, can be achieved by considering the reasons why parents are not choosing your restaurant to begin with. By creating a family friendly environment in time for half term you will be rewarded, daily takings will increase and a new customers will be gained.