restaurant with swing bottles

Should the hospitality industry charge for tap water?

In the UK, customers expect restaurants to provide tap water for free. With single-use bottled water providing financial benefits but a high cost to the environment, is there a better solution for hospitality businesses in 2020?
Waitress with Brita Swing bottles

Free table water is for some in the hospitality industry a cause for concern. For small independent venues in particular, the margins on food can be low and the opportunities in drink high.

This topic is something which often sparks debate within the industry. The financial benefits for businesses when customers order bottled mineral water are clear to see, but at the same time reducing waste is a goal for all in the hospitality industry.

While refusing free tap water to paying diners is no doubt a bad move for business, not recognising the revenue driver that bottled water can provide for hospitality operators would be foolish. The hospitality trade operates on tight margins, so every sale counts.

Brita Swing bottles on restaurant table

Is there a middle ground?

We believe that there is indeed another way and that providing tap water at the same time as ditching water in single-use bottles can actually be a revenue driver. How? By embracing branded, filtered water.

BRITA is the world leader in filtered water. This means that we know a thing or two about tap water – it’s the raw ingredient for everything we do!

By using a BRITA dispenser or water cooler, which provides chilled still and sparkling water on demand, hospitality businesses can provide an enhanced water offering as the filtration system removes all deposits that can affect the taste and appearance of water for a consistently high-quality drink.

Restaurant Swing Bottles on table

In fact, our water tastes so good, that many bars, cafés and restaurants successfully sell it – some donating the proceeds to charity. And by using branded glass bottles, the offer doesn’t just taste good, it looks good too.

It’s important to remember the importance of a great dining experience for paying guests. Filtered water presented in high-quality, refillable glass bottles are an asset to any dining establishment. For many, this is reason enough to provide it free of charge. Not to mention the potential to eliminate the need to buy, transport, store and recycle bottled water.

It’s time to pour water on the flames of debate, not fan them. Filtered water is an effective solution for businesses wondering how to offer sustainable, high-quality options to their customers, free or otherwise.

restaurant Bottles - Upscale - Longshot

73% of consumers would view a business more favourably if it gave free tap or filtered water on request*

*Water Water Everywhere, Keep Britain Tidy and BRITA UK, 2018

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