VAT cut for this Wednesday only


JD Wetherspoon

This Wednesday is your opportunity grab a bargain: 40 chains of bars and restaurants, and thousands of local independents, are cutting VAT for one day only. It'll shave a welcome 7.5% off your bill at 15,000 bars, restaurants and cafes ranging from Pret A Manger to Pizza Hut.

So why are they doing this? And what could you save?


The retailers involved in Tax Parity Day are part of the VAT Club, which wants to demonstrate to the government how a VAT cut in the restaurant trade could boost the economy. Tim Martin, JD Wetherspoon's chairman, told the Club's newsletter: "We're aiming to make it the busiest day of the entire year."

The group argues that a reduction in VAT would create more jobs and encourage more spending. They say that while it would initially mean less income for the government, over time the fact that more people were spending more money would mean that the tax take would be roughly the same as it is now.

They also argue that it would make things fairer in their competition with supermarkets - where much of the food is sold at a zero rate of VAT.

The campaign is being run by restaurant owner and lobbyist Jacques Borel, who is trying to persuade governments around Europe to reduce tax on spending. He wants to see VAT cut from 20% to 5%. He says that difference would be passed on equally to businesses and consumers - so we would see prices fall 7.5%. In addition to this demonstration, he has been lobbying the government, and has been supported by VAT Club.

There is some small hope that the pressure on the government could push VAT down in the long run. But in at the very least it could cut the cost of a mid-week treat.

The chains taking part are:

Arkell's Brewery
Black Sheep Brewery
Daniel Batham and Son
Daniel Thwaites
Donnington Brewery
Elgood and Sons
Everards Brewery
Felinfoel Brewery Co
Frederic Robinson
Fuller, Smith and Turner
George Bateman and Son
Hall and Woodhouse
Harvey and Sons (Lewes)
Holden Brewery
Hook Norton Brewery Co
Hyde's Brewery
JC & PH Palmer
Joseph Holt
JW Lees & Co
Leon de Bruxelles
Mandarin Oriental Hotel
McMullen & Sons
Pret a Manger
Punch Taverns
Robert Cain
SA Brain and Co
Shepherd Neame
St Austell Brewery Co
TGI Friday
T&R Theatston
Wadworth Co
Wells and Young's Brewing Company
WH Brakspear & Son
Young & Co
YUM! Pizza Hut franchises

10 consumer rights you should know

10 consumer rights you should know