Europe alcohol prices set to soar after coronavirus lockdown with ‘Helpy Hour’ in Belgium

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The tourism and hospitality industries have been two of the biggest victims of the coronavirus pandemic and are looking at ways to make some more cash. Cafes, bars and restaurants have been closed for the best part of three months in many European countries. As they reopen, they have had to spend more money on hygiene measures, such as extra sanitiser and cleaning products.

Some will also be unable to serve as many customers due to social distancing measures.

Bars could decide to introduce a coronavirus service charge, or even ‘pay double’ offers to win back some of their lost revenue.

A Tenerife tourist spotted an additional fee of €1 for the ‘coronavirus service charge’ on a receipt.

‘Helpy Hour’ has been introduced in some parts of Belgium by the Federation of Belgian cafes and urges people to buy one drink for the price of two.

The president said: “For years, customers have been pampered with happy hour.

“Now, we are going to try to do the opposite with Helpy Hour, to help the cafes keep their head above the water.”

Pubs in the UK hope to be allowed to open from July.

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Some pubs have already been offering pints to punters who remain outside and socially distance.

Regarding the reopening of pubs in England, Business Secretary Alok Sharma said: “There are businesses which still remain closed.

“As soon as we can, we will publish further guidance for restaurants, pubs and bars as well as hairdressers, barbers, nail bars and related services.

“These documents will provide practical steps to allow them to reopen in a manner that is safe as possible.

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“I know there has been a lot of speculation about when we might be able to reopen

“I understand why we are all so keen, I share that.

“We continue to follow the roadmap which sets out our ambition to reopen these sectors from 4 July at the earliest.”

Ministers are under pressure to relax the two metre social distancing rule.

There are fears that if they do not, the hospitality sector will struggle to recover from the crisis.

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