May 5, 2022 - Food and Drink

Mother's Day reservations surge beyond 2019 levels

Photo: Dave Creaney/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

New data from the online reservation platform OpenTable shows that Mother's Day reservations in Austin have surged beyond pre-pandemic levels, a 108% increase compared to those made in 2019.

Why it matters: The restaurant industry was hit hard by the pandemic as businesses were forced to shutter in 2020 and later returned to limited capacity.

By the numbers: Austin was among the top cities tracked by OpenTable experiencing a significant increase in Mother's Day reservations this year. Other cities that saw a sharp increase:

  • Scottsdale: 168%
  • Columbus, Ohio: 158%
  • Orlando: 117%

Zoom out: The increase is part of a wider trend for Mother's Day dining, which shows OpenTable reservations are up 39% nationwide compared to 2019 and up 13% compared to 2021.

Of note: Austin restaurants continue to face staffing shortages, with the city's service industry workforce rebounding at a slower rate than others.

  • Restaurant jobs per 1,000 total jobs were down 6.3% in 2021, the sixth largest decline among top-50 metros, according to a workforce report from BentoBox.

The bottom line: As dining returns, many restaurants are still dealing with staggering employee reductions as part of the so-called β€œGreat Resignation.”

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