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“Eat Out to Help Out” (EOHO) Scheme

As we reported yesterday the Chancellor introduced a new “Eat Out to Help Out” (EOHO) scheme to support hospitality businesses by encouraging the public to eat out by offering 50% discount.

The Government have now released further information about the Scheme, which businesses are eligible, and how they can register for the Scheme.

What is the Scheme?

The Eat Out to Help Out (EOHO) scheme offers 50% discount on food and non-alcoholic drinks to diners by encouraging them to eat at restaurants, up to a maximum of £10 per head (inclusive of VAT).  The Government will refund the 50% back to the establishment. The discount is not applicable to alcoholic drinks or service charges, or take away food.

When can the Scheme be used?

The scheme can be used on traditionally considered to be ‘quiet’ days in the trade i.e. Monday – Wednesday.  The scheme operates all day, and runs from 3rd to 31st August 2020 inclusive.

How often can the Scheme be used?

There is no limit as to the amount of times diners or establishments can use the Scheme.

Who can register for the Scheme?

Establishments that:

  • Sells food for immediate consumption on the premises
  • Provides dining areas (shared or otherwise) for consumption on the premises
  • Were registered as a food business with their relevant local authority on or prior to 7 July 2020

What types of businesses can register for the EOHO Scheme?

  • Restaurants
  • Cafes
  • Pubs that serve food
  • Hotel restaurants
  • Restaurants and cafes within tourists attractions i.e. theme parks, holiday sites and other leisure facilities
  • Dining rooms within members’ clubs
  • Workplace and school canteens.

Who is not eligible for the Scheme?

Establishments that only provide:

  • Takeaway food and drink
  • Catering services for private functions
  • Room-service only (i.e. hotels)
  • Dining services i.e. dinner cruises
  • Food via mobile vans or trainers

are excluded from the scheme.

How do I apply the discount cap to the diner’s bill?

For example, a group of four diners (2 adults and 2 children) spend £50, including £10 on alcoholic beverages. There is a 10% service charge bringing the pre-discount bill to £55.


What if my business has claimed under other Coronavirus Support Schemes?

You can still use this scheme if you have used any other support scheme during the pandemic, i.e. the furlough scheme or a local authority grant.

What if I don’t usually open on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday?

You can only offer discount under the scheme on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday – the scheme is not transferrable to other days.

What do you need to register for the Eat Out Help Out Scheme?

You will need:

  • Your Government Gateway ID and password (if you do not have one see our step by step instructions here)
  • The name and address of each establishment to be registered, unless you are registering more than 25 as part of the same in which case see additional guidance here
  • Your UK bank account and sort code for the business (the account must be capable of accepting BACS payments)
  • The address on your bank account for your business

Additionally you may need (if applicable):

  • Your VAT registration number
  • Employer PAYE scheme reference number
  • Corporation Tax or Self Assessment unique taxpayer number

HMRC will perform compliance checks when you register for the Scheme.  Agents are unable to register on your behalf.

How to register:

The online portal is now available for businesses to register here.  It is recommended that businesses with more than one establishment register all at the same time.  Establishments can be added later, however this will entail repeating the entire registration process again and could delay admission to the Scheme.

What will happen once registered for EOHO Scheme?

You will receive a registration number which will need to be quoted when claiming your reimbursement.  You will also be added to a list of registered establishments that will be available for the public to refer to.  You will be given a link to download promotional display materials to demonstrate that you are participating in the Scheme.

When can establishments start offering discount under the EOHO Scheme?

You cannot reclaim discounts that are offered prior to 3rd August 2020.  It is expected that establishments will operate the discount scheme during all opening hours on the applicable week days on the sale of qualifying food and drink.

We will update this guidance once details of the registration portal are known.

Repaying EOHO Scheme payments

If you have claimed money through the EOHO Scheme, you can make a repayment if either:

  • you’ve received a letter from HMRC telling you that you’ve claimed too much
  • you’ve realised that you have been overpaid or were not eligible
  • you do not need the money and would like to voluntarily pay it back.

If you have received payments you were not entitled to and have not repaid the money yet, you need to advise HMRC as soon as possible to avoid a penalty. The notification period is within 90 days of receipt of the payment. You can make your repayment here.

Further information on repaying any EOHO Scheme payments can be found here.

Full Government guidance together with additional FAQs and helpful practical examples are available here:

We have also provided guidance as to how hospitality businesses should prepare for the VAT cut here.