Half of businesses prepared for London Olympics

More than half of hospitality, travel and leisure businesses say that they are now prepared for the impending London Olympics next year.

In what is expected to be possibly the busiest time ever for London event venues and hospitality providers, 55 per cent of businesses claim they are ready for the big event.

Just 37 per cent believe that they are running behind their own schedule. However, Deloitte’s Games Readiness research noted that there is a marked improvement on firms’ overall preparation, up 23 per cent since on last year.

Deloitte’s head of travel and tourism, Graham Pickett, told Big Hospitality that although the period during the Games will “remain very challenging,” it is “an opportunity that few can afford to ignore.

“London 2012 represents a significant and very timely opportunity for most UK travel, hospitality and leisure operators,” he said, adding that VisitBritain estimates that visitors spending during the Games will be around the £2 billion mark.

The research also revealed that just under half of businesses cite staffing levels as the biggest concern during the Games, which are expected to attract around 380,000 visitors. Pickett warned that firms must be prepared for all eventualities, staffing or otherwise.

“London 2012 is an immovable deadline,” he said. “Businesses in this sector must recognise that they now need to act quickly to make the most of the opportunity,” he added on DeloitteLondon2012.co.uk.