To help the hospitality and leisure industry recover from the impact of the first national lockdown, a reduced rate of VAT of 5% was introduced for a limited period from 15 July 2020. The reduced rate of VAT was originally to apply until 12 January 2021. However, in September last year, the Chancellor announced that it would remain at 5% until 30 March 2021.
By the time of the Spring 2021 Budget on 3 March 2021, the hospitality and leisure sectors were suffering the effects of further lockdowns. To provide more help to this sector, the period for which the reduced temporary 5% rate of VAT will apply has been further extended until 30 September 2021. From 1 October 2021, a new reduced rate of VAT of 12.5% will apply until 31 March 2022. The rate will revert to the standard rate of 20% from 1 April 2022.
The following supplies will benefit from the reduced rate of 5% until 30 September 2021 and the new reduced rate of 12.5% from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022.
- Food and non-alcoholic beverages sold for on-premises consumption, for example, in restaurants, cafes, and pubs.
- Hot takeaway food and hot takeaway non-alcoholic beverages.
- Sleeping accommodation in hotels or similar establishments, holiday accommodation, pitch fees for caravans and tents, and associated facilities.
- Admission to cultural attractions that do not already benefit from the cultural VAT exemption, such as theatres, circuses, fairs, amusement parks, concerts, museums, zoos, cinemas, exhibitions, and other similar cultural events and facilities.
Where admission to an attraction is within the existing cultural VAT exemption, this takes precedence over the reduced rate.
Partner note: Finance (No. 2) Bill 2019—21, cl. 92, 93.