03 Jul 2022

Hair we go! Queues outside Kilkenny barbers as salons and more business re-opens

Streets already looking busier as some restrictions ease today


A man waits outside a barbers on High Street, Kilkenny this morning

Despite a little rain, there were already some small queues outside a number of local barber shops in Kilkenny this morning, as we move into the next phase of re-opening.

From today, Monday 10, personal services (hairdressers, barbers, beauticians) can reopen for customers with appointments only. Click and collect is also back, in-store by appointment only, and outdoor retail can recommence.

EXPLAINER: What are the changes to Covid-19 restrictions from today?

Some 156 hair and beauty salons in Kilkenny are re-opening this week, welcoming back customers today after the easing of government restrictions. The Hair and Beauty Industry Confederation (HABIC) says it's delighted to see its members being able to finally open their doors again after being shut for all of 2021.

"We are delighted that the long wait for our members is finally over with hair and beauty salons opening their doors for appointments. We can now recommence to provide the essential personal care services we carry out across Ireland. As the first few weeks will be hectic, we would like to thank customers for their support and patience. We would also strongly encourage customers to support us against the potential of no shows," said Margaret O'Rourke Doherty, CEO of HABIC.

"If they are unable to attend their appointment for any reason, it is essential that they cancel or reschedule their appointment, as the impact of clients not arriving for appointments is very damaging for businesses.  It means other customers cannot be accommodated, thus causing a massive loss in sales at a point when salons are already struggling."

HABIC is encouraging customers who cannot attend their appointments to inform the hair or beauty business they booked with and cancel their appointments as early as possible. In 2020 no-shows had a hugely negative impact on the industry. According to Phorest Salon Software a massive €519,000 in revenue was lost per day by clients not arriving for appointments. This left many salons with no option but to introduce booking deposits. Informing salons of cancellations will help support businesses at this challenging time.

Customers attending appointments are encouraged and reminded  to follow all guidelines in place. HABIC has produced updated guidelines for its members across the country to help them prepare to welcome back their customers safely. The guidelines are made up of a combination of the Government's Work Safely Protocol and implementing learnings from the first two lockdowns.

Salon operators have been extremely busy while closed as salons were prepared and teams were trained in properly responding to public health advice in the workplace. This will ensure the best experience for all our customers as they return.

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