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Tips to Attract Families During School Holidays

School holidays present a golden opportunity for regional venues to attract families and boost revenue. How can you ensure your establishment stands out as the go-to destination for parents seeking fun and enriching experiences for their children? Here are some winning strategies:


family dining in restaurant

Create a Dedicated Play Zone:

Designating a space within your venue specifically for children can make a huge difference in attracting families during school holidays. This can be as simple as an area with board games, colouring books, and crayons, or more elaborate with age-appropriate toys and puzzles. Consider adding educational elements like maps of the region or wildlife identification charts. If space allows, explore options like a ball pit, a mini play structure, or a designated arts and crafts area.Remember, safety is paramount—ensure the play zone is well-maintained, with age-appropriate furniture and cushioned flooring.

Offer Engaging Activities:

Organise kid-focused activities throughout the day to attract families with children. Think scavenger hunts around your venue, face painting sessions, or even themed movie nights for older children. Partner with local artisans or educators to offer workshops on topics like candle making, pottery painting, or indigenous craft demonstrations. For a regional twist, these workshops can highlight local materials and traditions.

Embrace Interactive Dining:

Move beyond the traditional "Kids Menu" by offering fun and interactive options like "Build Your Own Pizza" stations where children can choose their favourite toppings. Consider healthy and regional options alongside classic favourites.Get creative with "Mystery Milkshakes" with surprise flavours, or "DIY Sundae Bars" with a variety of toppings.Encourage children to customise their meals, making dining an engaging experience.

Family-Friendly Events:

Organise special events catering to families. Cooking classes designed for parents and children can be a fun bonding experience. Food pairing workshops can introduce children to different flavours and ingredients in a playful way. Host themed dinners or brunches with costume contests or entertainment specifically geared towards kids. Partner with local farms or producers to offer farm tours or "harvest to table" experiences for families.

Think Beyond the Meal:

Consider offering family packages that include accommodation, meals, and pre-arranged activities or excursions in the region. Partner with local attractions or childcare providers to offer discounted packages that combine dining at your restaurant with other family-friendly activities.

Create Unique Experiences:

Offering unique and memorable experiences can set your venue apart during school holidays. Host special theme nights that cater to children's interests, such as superhero nights, pirate adventures, or fairytale dinners. Include themed decorations, costumes for staff, and themed activities or menus. Arrange for live entertainment such as magicians, clowns or puppet shows to keep children entertained while parents enjoy their meals.

Leverage Local Attractions and Events:

Regional restaurants can benefit greatly from aligning their promotions and activities with local attractions and events to attract families during school holidays. Form partnerships with local tourist attractions such as zoos, parks, museums, and adventure spots. Offer joint promotions or discounts for visitors who dine at your restaurant. Identify local events and festivals happening during the school holidays and create special promotions or themed menus that align with these events. This could include hosting pre- or post-event meals, offering discounts to event ticket holders, or creating festival-inspired dishes.

Utilise Social Media and Online Marketing:

Effective use of social media and online marketing can significantly increase your reach and attract more families during school holidays. Create engaging content that highlights your family-friendly offerings. Use platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok to share photos and videos of your play zone, special activities, and interactive dining options.Offer special deals or discounts for families who book online. Create a dedicated section on your website highlighting your family-friendly features and upcoming events during school holidays. Collaborate with local influencers or parenting bloggers who can share their positive experiences at your venue with their followers. By implementing these strategies, your restaurant can transform itself into a haven for families during school holidays.Remember, the key is to provide a fun and engaging environment that caters to both children and their parents, creating lasting memories and encouraging repeat visits.

Staffing Solutions for Peak Periods

Managing staffing fluctuations during peak seasons can be a challenge. ChefHire can help! We specialise in providing pre-vetted chefs to hospitality businesses across Australia. Our chefs are experienced and reliable, ensuring you have the qualified staff you need to deliver exceptional service throughout the busy school holiday periods.


Contact ChefHire today to discuss your staffing needs and ensure a smooth operation during the next school holiday wave.

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