UKHospitality Scotland has welcomed the decision from Scotland’s government to reduce the self-isolation period from 10 to seven days, but have warned without reversing restrictions in place until 17 January livelihoods “remain in the balance”.
First minister Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement that people who test positive for Covid in Scotland will be allowed to exit self-isolation after seven days if they have no fever and record two negative lateral flow tests.
UKHospitality Scotland’s executive director, Leon Thompson, said: “The reduction from 10 to seven days for self-isolation will be welcomed by the Scottish hospitality businesses that are able to trade at reasonable levels and thus require greater numbers of their team.
“Christmas and Hogmanay were a write-off for many of our businesses. The ongoing uncertainty on how, or indeed if, sporting and business events can take place over coming weeks and months is now sapping business and consumer confidence further.
He added: “If the uncertainty around restrictions continues, Easter bookings and trade will suffer, too, as holidaymakers from Scotland and the rest of the UK decide to travel elsewhere.
“Financial support for hospitality is yet to reach struggling businesses – even when it does, it will help with some immediate costs but won’t save the struggling hospitality venues that so desperately need to trade at full capacity. Above all, those businesses need clarity on when restrictions will be lifted and recognition from the Scottish Government that future restrictions on hospitality are not the way out of the current phase of the pandemic.”