In the wake of an executive order issued today that closed all sit-down service at 3 p.m. today (Monday), bars, theaters and a number of other establishments in the State of Michigan to mitigate the Coronavirus (or COVID-19) threat, it’s interesting and important to get a snapshot of how restaurants were doing.
Although there are a variety of anecdotal accounts and one-off data points, the online reservation service OpenTable has released a set of data from around the world showing the percentage change, year over year, of restaurant reservations on their platform in certain localities.
So of course, I dove in to take a look at the data for Michigan.
The first thing to notice is the last seven days, from March 9 through 15. That’s when the numbers really start to drop hard, to 54 percent by yesterday, Sunday, March 15.
Second, as you look at the full chart linked here, you realize that reservations using the platform statewide hadn’t really been growing over the last 27 days. There were a few good days, and then some pretty bad ones.
Nationally, the state hit the worst was Maryland, down 67 percent. The least was Hawaii, down 26 percent. The least of the contiguous 48 states? A tie between Oklahoma and South Carolina, down 31%
This is just one platform. But it’s an interesting look behind the curtain around one of the many challenges bars and restaurants are facing right now.
If you have a favorite place to go and resources to do so, a number of restaurants and bars have set up GoFundMe campaigns for their staff and have posted them to social media.