Gatineau businesses say customers are already adapting to the vaccine passport
A few days after the introduction of the Quebec vaccine passport, businesses in the Outaouais state that their customers have already started to adapt.
Most companies have chosen to start the full application on day one, despite the grace period that allows them to require the passport on September 15.
Companies polled by CBC said they turned down an average of 10% of customers, some of whom were fully vaccinated but forgot their proof.
It is largely their visitors to Ontario, companies say, who must remember to bring their proof of vaccination and identification. Quebecers can show a printed QR code or download the VaxiCode app to prove their vaccination status.
Rebecca Fortin-Bouchard, general manager of Les Brasseurs du Temps, said preparation time was important to develop a plan and share it with her staff.
The brasserie, like many restaurants, is understaffed. Fortin-Bouchard has been stressed out juggling vaccine passports with contact tracing records and capacity restrictions, but says it’s going better than expected.
“There are always customers who are quite annoyed,” says Fortin-Bouchard.
“It’s so complicated, just having a drink now, but they also try to be respectful to the staff because they know it’s not our fault. We just try to stay open.”
The fall weather, the vaccine passport cools business
Besides the 10% she believes Les Brasseurs du Temps have turned away, she has also noticed fewer customers, but attributes it to the colder weather and restarting schools.
Further north in Chelsea, Que., Issac Lauzon, deputy director of the Chelsea Pub agreed that the weather could be a factor, but he also believes the passport implementation has hurt his business.
“We didn’t have as many people as we needed to spin because they pretty much knew what was coming,” he said. “There were just fewer people coming to our facility because of this fact.”
Chef and owner of Les Vilains Boys restaurant in old Hull, Romain Riva, turned away around 30% of those who booked on the first day when passports were required, but only two on the second day.
Riva worries about having to turn down larger bookings over the Labor Day weekend.
“We have reservations for six, eight, 10 and 12 people. There just needs to be one in there who doesn’t have the papers and it’s no,” he said in an interview. in French on Radio-Canada.
Émilie Lortie, owner of Zone Concept Santé gymnasium in Maniwaki, Quebec, wonders if she should reimburse people who have canceled their memberships as a result.
She is concerned about financial loss and maintaining long-term relationships with clients in a small community like Maniwaki, Quebec.