Eat Out To Help Out

Find out how to register your restaurant or establishment for the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme.

You can register for the scheme from 13 July 2020.  You can use the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme to offer a discount to diners and encourage them to eat at your restaurant.

You can use the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme:

All day, every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3 to 31 August 2020
To offer a 50% discount, up to a maximum of £10 per person, to diners for food or non-alcoholic drinks to eat or drink in
To claim the money back from the government
There is no limit to the number of times customers can use the offer during the period of the scheme. Your customers cannot get a discount for someone who is not eating or drinking.

Alcohol and service charges are excluded from the offer. Registration will close on 31 August.

You can register if your establishment:

Sells food for immediate consumption on the premises
Provides its own dining area or shares a dining area with another establishment for eat-in meals
Was registered as a food business with the relevant local authority on or before 7 July

You cannot register:

An establishment that only offers takeaway food or drink
Catering services for private functions
Hotel that provides room service only
Dining services (such as packaged dinner cruises)
Mobile food vans or trailers
If your application is based on dishonest or inaccurate information, your registration will be revoked.

What you’ll need

To register, you must have:

Your Government Gateway ID and password (if you do not have one, you can create one when you register)
The name and address of each establishment to be registered, unless you are registering more than 25
The UK bank account number and sort code for the business (only provide bank account details where a BACS payment can be accepted)
The address on your bank account for the business (this is the address on your bank statements)

You may also need your:

VAT registration number (if applicable)
Employer PAYE scheme reference number (if applicable)
Corporation Tax or Self Assessment unique taxpayer reference
If you are registering 25 establishments or less, you must provide the details of each.

If you’re registering more than 25 establishments

If you’re registering more than 25 establishments that are part of the same business, you do not have to provide details for each one.
You should provide a link to a website which contains details of each establishment participating in the scheme including the trading name and address.
You may also need to provide a list to HMRC on request, with details of all participating establishments.

Register

You cannot register yet. The service you‘ll use to register will be available from 13 July 2020.

What happens next

You’ll be registered instantly and will receive a registration reference number – you’ll need this when you claim the reimbursement.
You can download promotional materials to help you promote the scheme and let your customers know that you’re taking part.
You’ll be added to a list of registered establishments that will be available to the public. The list of registered establishments is not available yet.
Businesses that have more than one establishment are encouraged to register all establishments that are eligible to offer the scheme. Once you have registered your business it may be possible to add new establishments, but you will have to contact HMRC again and this may delay the establishment being included in the scheme.
If you want to be removed from the list of registered establishments, you should contact HMRC who will remove you manually. This is not immediate, so you must tell customers that you are no longer offering the discount.

When you start offering the discount

You should wait until you’re registered before you offer discounts to your customers. You cannot offer discounts before 3 August.
When you register for the scheme, it is expected that you will offer it during the whole of your opening hours on all the eligible days that you are open and on all qualifying sales of food or drink.
If a customer purchases a meal with the intention of eating it but then takes it away and leaves the premises, you can still apply the discount

Records you must keep

For each day you’re using the scheme, you must keep records of the:
Total number of people who have used the scheme in your establishment
Total value of transactions under the scheme
Total amount of discounts you’ve given
If you are using the scheme for more than one establishment, you must keep these records for each.

Making a claim

You cannot claim yet. The service you’ll use to claim reimbursements will be available on 7 August 2020.
The service will close on 30 September.
You must wait 7 days from registration to make your first claim. HMRC will pay eligible claims within 5 working days.
You will be able to submit claims on a weekly basis.
You’ll still need to pay VAT based on the full amount of your customers’ bills.
Any money you receive through the scheme will be treated as taxable income.
HMRC will provide more guidance on how to make a claim when the registration service is open.

Other help you can get

HMRC have published guidance with more information on eligibility and how to offer the discount.
NHS have introduced the test and trace service to help track the spread of coronavirus.
Find coronavirus financial support for your business.

Why you should use the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme

It will incentivise customers to eat in your restaurant or other eating establishment by giving them a discount which you can then claim back from the government. The scheme is UK wide and customers will be able to see who is taking part on GOV.UK. The scheme will drum up custom on quieter days of the week and means you can build your business back up.

An agent cannot apply on your behalf.

Designing a scheme that allows tax agents to apply on your behalf would have taken much longer to deliver, at a time when speed is the priority. We have worked hard to make the registration and claims process as easy as possible.

Establishments that are eligible for the scheme

Eligible establishments are those in which food is sold for immediate on-premises consumption. This could include:

Restaurants
Cafés
Public houses that serve food
Hotel restaurants
Restaurants and cafes within tourist attractions, holiday sites and leisure facilities
Dining rooms within members’ clubs
Workplace and school canteens

If you’ve used other schemes like Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and Self Employed Income Support Scheme
You can still register for the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme if you’ve used other schemes.

If you’ve recently submitted an application to the Local Authority to operate as a food business
Provided you submitted your application to the relevant local authority on or before 7 July 2020, you will be eligible for the scheme.

Expenditure that is eligible for the discount
The discount can be applied to food and/or non-alcoholic drink purchased for immediate consumption on premises, up to a maximum discount of £10 per diner (inclusive of VAT).
There is no minimum spend requirement.

Expenditure that is ineligible for the discount
The discount cannot be applied to the following items:

Alcoholic drinks
Tobacco products
Food or drink that is to be consumed off premises
Food or drink that is sold as part of a private party, event or function taking place within an eligible establishment

When you should offer the discount
When you register for the scheme, it is expected that you will offer it during the whole of your opening hours on all the eligible days that you are open and on all qualifying sales of food or drink.

If you’re normally closed on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday
You can only offer the discount on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, when your business is open.

If a customer leaves the premises after ordering food or drink to dine in
If a customer is dining in and then takes away the remainder of their meal, the discount will still apply.

If a customer only orders a non-alcoholic drink
The scheme discount applies to food or non-alcoholic drink for dining in.

What counts as ‘on premises’
For the purposes of this scheme, the term ‘on premises’ means any area set aside for the consumption of food or non-alcoholic drink by that establishment’s customers, whether or not that area may also be used by the customers of other establishments.

If you operate a hotel with a restaurant
You can use the scheme for food and drink sold for immediate consumption on the restaurant premises. This does not include food and drink that is purchased as part of a wider service.

If you run a café that has an outdoor seating area
You can use the scheme and apply the discount to food or drink sold for immediate consumption on the café premises.

If you put a table and chairs on the pavement outside your take-away or mobile van
You cannot use the scheme. To be eligible your business must have the facility to offer dining on the premises. Establishments with only informal outside seating in an area that does not belong to the establishment and/or is not shared with other establishments, will not be eligible to participate in the scheme.

If you operate an outlet in a shopping centre and share a designated dining area with other outlets
You can use the scheme and apply the discount to food or drink sold for immediate consumption in that designated area.

If you run a stall at a stadium or attraction
You can use the scheme, provided there is a designated area belonging to you for use by your customers.

Examples:

If you operate a hotel and provide bed and breakfast service
The scheme discount is only available to food and drink sold for immediate consumption on premises. This does not include food and drink that is sold as part of a wider accommodation service.

If you provide catering services for weddings and other events
You cannot use the scheme. The scheme discount is only available to food and drink sold for immediate consumption on premises. This does not include food and drink that is sold as part of a wider catering service.

If you are a restaurant and are selling food and drink as part of events, functions and private parties
You cannot apply the scheme discount to food and drink that is sold as part of a private party, event or function. You can however apply the discount to food and drink sold in the normal course of the restaurant business.

If you are a canteen operator
The definition of an eligible establishment covers workplace and school canteens.  The scheme discount can then be applied to food and drink that is sold to employees or students for immediate consumption on premises. The scheme does not cover food and drink that is paid for by the owner of the premises and supplied to employees or students for free.

If you include a service charge on your bill
The service charge is not included in the scheme discount – the reduction only applies to spend on food and non-alcoholic drinks.

If you offer other discounts to diners
You can use the scheme alongside other offers and discounts you are offering.
To calculate the value of the transaction and make a claim to HMRC, you must first apply any special offers, vouchers or discount schemes you might be promoting or accepting and deduct any service charge.
You will only be reimbursed for the qualifying discounts you provide as part of the scheme.

If you do not want to offer a 50% discount
You cannot change the terms of the scheme, the discount you offer must be 50%.

What counts as a ‘diner’
A diner is any person, adult or child, for whom food or drink is being purchased for consumption on premises. A diner does not need to be the paying customer.

Applying the £10 per person cap to a single bill
Where there is more than one diner on a single bill, the cap does not need to be calculated for each individual diner based on their specific orders. Instead, the discount that is applied to the overall bill should be capped at the number of diners multiplied by £10.

Example of applying the cap to a £60 bill
A group of four diners (2 adults and 2 children) spend £60, including £10 on alcoholic beverages. There is a 10% service charge bringing the pre-discount bill to £66.

Description | Price
Bill before service charge and discount | £60.00
Amount spent on alcohol | £10.00
Service charge | £6.00
Total bill | £66.00
Amount that discount can be applied to | £50.00
Discount to customers (50% of 50) | £25.00
Bill after discount is applied | £41.00
The total discount is £25, which is £6.25 per diner and is below the £10 per diner cap.

Example of applying the cap to a £100 bill
A group of four diners (2 adults and 2 children) spend £100, including £10 on alcoholic beverages. There is a 10% service charge bringing the pre-discount bill to £110.

Bill before service charge and discount | £100.00
Amount spent on alcohol | £10.00
Service charge | £10.00
Total bill | £110.00
Amount that discount can be applied to | £90.00
Uncapped discount to customers (50% of 90) | £45.00
Capped discount (£10 per diner) | £40.00
Bill after discount is applied | £70.00
The uncapped discount is £45, which is £11.25 per diner and is above the £10 per diner cap. The discount is therefore capped at £40.

Contact HMRC
A dedicated phoneline and webchat will be available from 13 July 2020.
This guidance will be updated.

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