“The staff cannot be found, more and more hotels will close their kitchens to transform themselves into B&Bs as early as 2023”
“The endemic lack of seasonal workers risks distorting the traditional formats of tourism so much so that, after last summer’s critical situations, more and more hotels, especially on the Romagna coast, are thinking of closing their kitchens and turning into B&Bs”. The pitiless analysis comes from the observatory of Bee Family, the most important Italian agency dedicated to tourism for families which, statistics in hand, joins the fears that, for some years now, have been raised compactly by the hotel sector: “They are now different years that we have recorded this trend – explains Andrea Messinese, one of the members of Bee Family – but, after last summer, the requests have grown exponentially and, based on the data of our observatory, about four out of ten hotels are currently thinking to a conversion of their receptive model. It is an almost obligatory choice after, in recent years, staff recruitment has become increasingly problematic and, in some cases, for this very reason, hotels have not been able to guarantee their customers an efficient service” . “In almost all hotels – adds Emilio Zorini, another member of Bee Family – the use of family members in strategic roles in the structure has often proved to be the only possible solution to avoid a paralysis of the service. And so, wives have become cooks, children bartenders and grandchildren dishwashers and handymen. The problem of the lack of personnel, in addition to representing serious damage to entrepreneurs, also significantly affects the harmony of workers because, without turnover, many employees have been forced to work exhausting shifts without days off and with hours well above the contractual limits. And here, again based on our experience, we feel like throwing a spear in favor of hoteliers. Too often, in fact, we speak hastily of exploitation but, in many cases, hoteliers would be happy to hire more people, the problem is that spare parts cannot be found and, believe us, it is not just a question of low salaries…”. “This situation – concludes the Bee Family Observatory – has generated exasperation and frustration and so, as early as next summer season, we must expect an increase in bed & breakfasts and, in the medium to long term, it is probable that these trends will consolidate and cause some changes in seaside tourism models. For example, hoteliers are likely to make ever more constant use of technology substitutes, delegating some accounting or booking-related tasks to the new digital devices. Luckily, hospitality will never be replaced by computer applications or equipment, but it is clear that, without employees, entrepreneurs are born, despite themselves, to think of new forms of work organization as well”.
cs observatory of Bee Family