Why every customer will have to provide their details when pubs reopen

Every customer will have to provide their details when pubs reopen (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

All customers must sign in to pubs and bars when they reopen, under new rules intended to make venues safer.

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Hospitality venues such as pubs, cafes, and restaurants will be able to open outdoors from 12 April, but industry figures have expressed concerns about the measures.

Previous rules meant that one person from every group had to sign in to venues on entry, whereas now each person will be required to do so.

What are the new rules?

With venues only able to open outdoors from 12 April, it is as yet unclear whether people will be able to go inside to the bar for payment.

While other requirements, such as drinking curfews, have been dropped from the guidelines, the new rules mean every customer over 16 will need to check in to NHS test and trace, or give their details to staff.

Pubs and restaurants will be expected to take “reasonable steps” to prevent people from coming in without registering their details.

Government guidance states that any business which does not comply with the requirements will be “subject to financial penalties” of up to £1000.

The guidance states: “It is vital that you comply with these requirements to help keep people safe, and to keep businesses open”.

‘Disproportionate and discriminatory measures’

In a joint statement, UK Hospitality and the British Beer & Pub Association said the new rules would create further “confusion and inconvenience for customers and staff.

It said: "Pubs will already be trading at a loss when they reopen with all the existing restrictions and Covid-secure measures in place," they said.

"Adding further disproportionate and discriminatory measures threatens the very survival of thousands of businesses."

A government spokeswoman said: "Public health rules are kept under constant review and we are providing as much flexibility for pubs and other hospitality businesses as possible.

"The roadmap [to reopening] set out that hospitality would open from step two, and removed any requirements for curfews or a substantial meal for customers."