5 Tips to Get Your Restaurant Ready for the Holidays

It’s that time of year again: the weather is getting cooler and that can mean only one thing…the holidays are well on their way! Marked with family gatherings, office parties, friendly rendezvous, ‘tis the time for you get your holiday season game on.

With Halloween behind us, Thanksgiving is well on it’s way. If you haven’t already begun preparations, now’s the time to hop on the bandwagon because there’s a LOT to do and not a lot of time to do it in. With that in mind, we’re sharing the five best ways you can maximize profits, minimize losses and have yourself a merry little season.

1. When in doubt, always overstaff

Quite possibly the most important rule to follow when getting things ready for the holidays. Making sure you have more than enough staff means you’ll be a whole lot less stressed. With time getting tight before Thanksgiving, now is the time to find the right folks for your restaurant. Not sure how many staffers to hire? Try following this rather simple Sales and Guest Projections chart to give yourself a good baseline.

2. Add some seasonal options to your menu

There’s nothing more fun than flexing your creative muscle when it comes to planning this holiday season and one of the best ways to get in the mood is to add some seasonal options to your menu. Whether it’s adding a fall cocktail or two with dark spirits and warming spices like Ryan Wainwright at Terrine in LA, or adding a pricier protein like rack of lamb, duck or filet to the menu, this is the time of year when customers will pay just a little bit more for those delicious seasonal offerings.

3. Appeal to every occasion

One way to consider getting set for the season is to set your restaurant up for hosting events. Holiday parties are a great way to fill your seats AND bring patrons into your space. Whether it’s a family gathering or an office party of 25, chances are if people like what they see (and eat) they’ll be back for more.

4. Dress it up for success

Do you know what the difference is between a restaurant that doesn’t help in the cheer with some seasonal decor and one that does? Business, that’s what. Chances are if the watering hole or burger shop down the street showcases some fall or winter decor, they may attract your customers straight through their doors. We recommend getting festive without going all-out crazy. Keep it tasteful, non-holiday specific (no inflatable santas) and you’ll be good to go.

5. Celebrate with your team!

The last and definitely one of the most important ways to keep your staff morale up during the busiest time of the year is to host your very own holiday party. Cheers to the people that make running your restaurant possible!