Ninety-five businesses in the North Antrim area participated in the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ government backed scheme during August, offering diners 50% off the price of their meal up to £10, with the government subsidising the other half.
In latest figures released, North Antrims participating businesses – thirteen of which were in the Ballymoney area – claimed 125,000 half price meals served from Mondays to Wednesdays throughout August, with an average spend of £5.87 per meal.
This equates to claims worth £734,000 for the North Antrim area alone, out of over £16m to date claimed throughout Northern Ireland. The highest amount claimed was from the South Belfast area (£2,283,000)
The hospitality sector had called for the scheme to be extended given its success, with some announcing their plans to continue their own version of the scheme, albeit without government backing.
Independent research saw a 53% increase in restaurant bookings compared to the same period last year, and on the final day of the scheme on Monday those were up 216% against the same day in 2019.