#YorkshireTogether and Sharing Best Practice
As lockdown restrictions loosen, we’re sharing best practice from Yorkshire tourism industry businesses on how they are preparing to reopen, recover and rebuild.
If you’re also making plans to get up and running again, use #YorkshireTogether when adding updates to social media so others can keep up to date with what’s happening in the county.
- If you can’t open just yet, can you start a fundraising campaign to help your finances through this downtime? Both The Deep and Helmsley Walled Garden set up donation pages on their websites. Use the opportunity to tell people what different amounts of money can cover or consider offering them something in return.
- Manage potential influxes of visitors by asking people to book a timeslot prior to arrival. Bolton Abbey have an online ticketing system to ensure visitors can enjoy their visit knowing that numbers will be restricted.
- If you have a membership scheme, you could invite members first as Castle Howard did, or offer a priority slot for them to visit. Not just a great opportunity to welcome those who support your business, it can also give you a chance to ask for feedback on the measures you’ve put in place. If you don’t have a membership scheme, why not invite your newsletter database initially?
- Ensure you communicate with your customers regularly, keeping them up to date with changes to your business and with details of how you’re able to keep them safe during their visit. Whilst social media is an ideal way to get a message across, consider using a newsletter or even write a blog, just as The Private Hill has done.
- Visitors will be looking to see that you have PPE and thorough hygiene practices in place to keep them, your staff or yourselves safe. Introduce screens and masks, and have sanitiser placed throughout for everyone to use.
- When putting plans in place, why not consult your customers and ask what they want to see you doing to feel reassured? Go Ape have a short survey on their homepage asking for ideas and thoughts on their plans to reopen.
- Label the floor to mark two-metre distancing, as Leeds Cookery School will be doing, and help your customers stay safe by staying apart.
- It’s not always necessary to spend money to offer something new. The Coniston Hotel are promoting new walks and picnic areas around their grounds, giving guests something different to experience using features that already exist.
- If lockdown restrictions mean that you can’t open your doors fully can you partially reopen? The National Trust have opened many gardens, whilst keeping their houses closed.
- Many accommodation providers are opting for contactless stays, limiting the interaction required by guests and staff. Increased options for in-room and al fresco dining, along with private hot tubs, are some features of a break at Middleton Lodge.
- Introduce appointment only visits for customers, just as car dealer JCT600 have done. Not only does this one-on-one service keep your offering exclusive, it makes social distancing and other measures simpler to monitor.
- Reassure customers, give them the confidence to return and be clear about the facilities that are available. Ripley Castle have details of areas that will be accessible for visitors including toilets, car parking and cafes.
- Be aware of your local area and measures introduced to help with social distancing measures. Leeds City Council are widening pavements and increasing cleaning throughout the centre.
- When responding to cancellation requests, offer alternative dates, just as Meadow Falls have
- Adapt your offering and collaborate with local businesses. Kiplin Hall brought Pizzas Proper in to offer wood-fired pizzas for visitors looking for an easy but tasty picnic option.
- York Gin provided us with their top 7 tips following their reopening on 4th July - you can read them all here.
- Help build customer confidence with VisitBritain’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ industry standard to show you’re following guidance to keep them safe, just as The Burgoyne Hotel have done. If you’re a member of Welcome to Yorkshire, let us know when you receive the accreditation and we’ll add the logo to your business listing on Yorkshire.com.
- Be innovative and implement new ideas. The Cedar Court Hotel Group have created experiences for guests to remember with ‘Sing A Long Drive In Movie Nights’ in Bradford and a ‘garden lounge’ Tipi in Harrogate.