The hospitality industry invited to register for the Eat Out to Help Out scheme

13 July 2020

HMRC has confirmed, in a press release, that restaurants and other establishments who are providing food for customers to eat on-premises are now able to register for the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme.

The scheme, announced by Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, on 8 July 2020, means that everyone in the UK can receive a 50% discount on food and non-alcoholic drinks every Monday to Wednesday in August 2020, up to a maximum discount of £10 per head.  Alcoholic drinks are exempt from the deal. The offer also applies to children. Customers will not require a voucher as participating businesses will simply remove the discount from their bill. There is no limit to the number of times customers can use the offer during the period of the scheme.

Businesses are able to claim this money back and can expect to receive the funds in their bank accounts within five working days. The discounted amounts can be claimed back by businesses through an online service, which will be operated by HMRC. The claims can be made on a weekly basis.

Businesses will receive stickers to highlight the fact that they are using the scheme. Speaking on the subject, Rishi Sunak said:

“Restaurants and other eligible establishments are now able to support jobs by signing up to a place on the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme.

HMRC’s quick and easy registration page will soon have you on your way to welcoming back your customers with discounted dining on every Monday to Wednesday throughout August, with a simple process to reclaim these discounts back from the Government each week.”

Chief Executive and First Permanent Secretary of HMRC, Jim Harra, said:

“The hospitality industry is among the sectors worst affected by COVID-19. The Eat Out to Help Out Scheme will deliver support to more than 100,000 businesses, including restaurants, cafes and bars serving food and drink, helping to protect 1.8 million jobs across the UK.

Registering is easy, and we urge businesses to sign up early so they are ready to use the scheme when it starts on 3 August.

Businesses have made great efforts to re-open their sit-down services safely in line with social distancing guidance, so people can feel confident to dine out again.

Businesses can find information about the scheme and how to register online at GOV.UK.”

Businesses may register if they:

  • Sell food intended for the purpose of consumption on the premises when purchased
  • Provide their own dining area, or share a dining area with another establishment for eat-in-meals
  • Have registered as a food business with the relevant local authority on or before 7 July 2020

Businesses are not permitted to register if they:

  • Are an establishment offering only takeaway food or drink
  • Are a catering service for private functions
  • Are a hotel that provides room service only
  • Are a dining service, e.g. packaged dinner cruise
  • Are a mobile food van or trailer

Any applications made on the basis of false or inaccurate information will have their registration revoked.

In order to register, businesses will require:

  • The Government Gateway ID and password for their business – if they do not have one, they can create one at the point of registration
  • The name and address of each establishment to be registered, unless there are more than 25
  • The UK bank account number and sort code for the business – only bank accounts where BACS payments can be accepted should be listed
  • The address on the bank account for their business

They may also need:

  • Their VAT registration number, where applicable
  • Their employer PAYE scheme reference number, where applicable
  • Their Corporation Tax or Self-Assessment unique taxpayer reference

For companies registering 25 or less establishments, they must provide details for each.

For companies registering more than 25 establishments, there is no requirement to provide details for each one. Instead, they can provide a link to the website containing details of each participating establishment, including the trading name and address. HMRC may also request a list with details of all participating establishments.

Registration is performed online, and there will be a searchable restaurant finder tool made available to the public prior to the scheme’s launch on 3 August 2020.


The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication. For all the latest information, news and resources on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting payroll professions, visit our Coronavirus hub.