Álvaro Jiménez, manager of El Poncho Restaurant, has experienced an increase in his bill of almost 200%. "The rise in electricity is making us bitter but we just have to hold on"
The hospitality business, dominated mostly by small self-employed workers and one of the hardest hit by the covid, is one of the ones that suffers the most from the rise in electricity. At first it was pointed out that the rise in electricity prices was going to translate on average into a 50% rebound in bills in the sector. However, the forecasts have fallen too short. The reality points to increases of almost 200%.
This is the case of Álvaro Jiménez, manager of the El Poncho restaurant, in Playa del Inglés, who has spent two months paying 959.59 euros for electricity to a total of 2,587.29. An amount that fully impacts its meager margins, after 18 months of covid and accumulated losses of 300,000 euros in the last year as a result of confinement and restrictions and that it has been able to support, to date, thanks to an ICO loan.
"It seems that they don't let us get out of the hole," says Álvaro, who explains that electricity consumption in the hotel and restaurant sector has nothing to do with that of a home. “Consumption in a restaurant is linear and very similar whether there are customers or not because the appliances must be on and on even if there is no one. Or perhaps when a client comes to eat or have a coffee, do I have to ask him to wait half an hour so that I will plug in the coffee maker? ”
Despite the rise in electricity and that is added to other increases, such as that of raw materials, such as avocado, meat or fish, Álvaro Jiménez does not plan to increase the prices of the menu. “I cannot risk raising prices as it is. It is a risky strategy that can lead me to lose clients, so what I have to do is hold on and bear what comes. It would be counterproductive, ”says Álvaro.