We are only a few days away from the holy month of Ramadan. Just like everyone gets ready for the month, the Food and Beverages industry get ready too. In this article, we go through some of the steps that Quick Service Restaurants do to get ready for this festive season.
Although Ramadan is only 30 days long, it requires lots and lots of preparations in advance. This is a must to avoid any complications and just enjoy a smooth operation. That is why in YYT Food Corp. every member of our leadership team meet up and present his or her ideas concerning pricing, menus, promotions, and more.
Usually, when people go out for Iftar or Suhoor, they expect live the ‘Ramadan experience’; they want to listen to Ramadan music, see Ramadan decorations and just enjoy the moment everyone breaks their fast. Think about it, Ramadan is all about ambiance. Quick Service Restaurants compete to make their surroundings as aesthetically pleasing as possible. Outlets needs to keep in mind that they have to stay true to their identity even whilst adapting to fit with Ramadan requirements.
Many, if not all, Quick service restaurants choose to decorate for Ramadan and give their spaces the Ramadan vibe. Walking in a restaurant, you may see things like Ramadan lanterns, string lights, popular Ramadan decorative characters, and Khayamya-inspired decorations all tastefully scattered around.
Aatif Ikram, Marketing Manager at YYT Food. Corp in Bahrain stating “Ramadan is a special time to strengthen family and community bonds. All the team is working to create a festive ambiance in our 4 main Yum Yum Tree restaurants in Bahrain. We arrange Arabic Iftaar Buffet with Arabic decorations to enhance a great Ramadan ambiance to celebrate the holy month of Ramadan with our customers. Besides the setting, it’s also key for us to offer authentic dishes and beverages, with different variety every week.”
Another important element is the music. Although some restaurants choose to go with one of the many Ramadan TV shows, others like to have popular Ramadan songs in the background. Decorations or music, both elements give the space a warm homey feel and take you down memory lane.
Because there are only two meals during Ramadan, Iftar, and Suhoor, and the rest of the day is for fasting, most restaurants change their working hours to operate from post-Asr prayer until fajr prayer. Off course there are some exceptions, especially in Dubai; restaurants like Vanillas and Pad Thai in Dubai Mall and Mall of the Emirates will operate full day. Beside delivering from Iftar to Suhoor, most of our locations will deliver food any time of the day as well.
People choose some restaurants over another based on their menus and the food they serve. Although some like to stick with their regular menus, other restaurants like to get creative and add the Ramadan flavor; some additional items like sambosa, soup, and green salad while others go the extra mile and introduce specific Ramadan meals or sandwiches. Almost everyone adds a Ramadan drink or two along with the highly-needed Arabian coffee. In UAE, Qatar, and Bahrain, we serve Laban and Dates to our customers to break their fast.
Most of the restaurants in the Food and Beverage industry try to drive business by adapting their menu offers to attract customers. Some offer discounted prices while others offer an ‘all you can eat’ or a free dessert. Every restaurant does its thing. At the end of the day, that is a major attraction to customers during the month. Customers are always the winners.
“During Ramadan YYT Food Corp. is taking initiatives by creating special offers for both those fasting and those looking to partake in this cultural experience. We are offering special set menu valid in-store and on delivery with up to 40% discount in all our Vanellis, Pad Thai, Teriyaki, Sukiyaki and Tiki Ming stores in UAE, Bahrain, and Qatar.” Explains Melanie Jean, Marketing Manager at YYT Food Corp.
“For the 1st time, this year, we will offer an Arabic menu in all our Al Mangal Express restaurants. Our special menu will include Laban and Dates with Soup, Hummus, Arabic bread and 2 mains. Because some people will visit us on a daily basis for Iftar, we will change every week our offer to let them discover different flavors from the Arabic world..” Shared Manal Iqkla, Marketing Manager at YYT Food Corp.
Everything is ready, now what? QSR take these few days before Ramadan to be present for their customers on Social Media, inform them about the preparations, tell them about their offers, and just answer their questions and be there for them. If you’re not online for your customers, you’re out of the competition. That is how important social media is.
As most restaurants will be closed during the day, online food delivery remains an important channel for restaurants during Ramadan. At YYT Food Corp. we get a special permit for preparing home delivery in UAE, Qatar, and Bahrain. During this month, our special offer “Buy 2 Get 1 Free” will be available on Deliveroo, Talabat, Carriage, Zomato and Tussel
Quick service restaurants became a big part of our culture. They turned from places to eat into places to break from routine, meet with friends, and enjoy a different vibe and range of international cuisines. Realizing that, Quick service restaurants are now taking the time to prepare for special occasions and be present for their customers in the holy month of Ramadan across the GCC.