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Food For Thought: Training Sessions Held in Hotels, Restaurants Ahead of GST Rollout

With just a few hours to go for the launch of the historic Goods and Services Tax, hotels and restaurants in the country say they’re ready, hopeful that the seminars, training sessions conducted over the last couple of months would come in handy to ensure a smooth transition.

Eram Agha | News18.com@erampatrakar

Updated:June 30, 2017, 4:54 PM IST
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Food For Thought: Training Sessions Held in Hotels, Restaurants Ahead of GST Rollout
(Photo: Reuters/Image for representation)
New Delhi: With just a few hours to go for the launch of the historic Goods and Services Tax, hotels and restaurants in the country say they’re ready, hopeful that the seminars, training sessions conducted over the last couple of months would come in handy to ensure a smooth transition.

Many eateries and hotels have been conducting intensive in-house training sessions for the staff, hiring consultants to clarify the new regime, and holding seminars for preparing guidelines to make bills under the new regime.

“There won’t be much change for the consumers but for us backend work has increased. To make sure there is expediency in adapting to the new order, we are attending the training sessions. Preparedness is what we are focusing on in the run up to the rollout” said Vaibhav Bhargawa from Tian restaurant ITC New Delhi. No matter how much we’re prepared, he added, there are still some changes that are expected.

“As far as guests staying at the hotel are concerned, there will be no partial payment for room service. Neither will there be part payment in cash or card. In fact, before the bills are created, we will ask the customer how they plan to make the payment,” he added. The method to generate a bill has become a tedious process now, with various levels of scanning and separate bar coding, said Bhargawa.

The story is similar for other luxury hotels. “Things will be different. We are conducting in-house training sessions so that our finance, operations and front desk guys are well versed with the details of the new tax regime. We’ve hired a consultant for these sessions,” said general manager from The Grand Hotel.

“We’re also focusing on being able to answer guests’ queries and give clarifications on the new bill that gets printed. This is our way of simplifying things at times of transition like these,” Sethi said.

Riyaaz Amlani, who is on the board of directors of Impresario and also president of National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) told News 18 that the industry had been prepping for almost three months now.

“For past three months, we have had a consultant to bring clarity in understanding the new tax regime. Running a restaurant is a complicated business, there has to be clear guidelines on preparing the new billing system. That has been worked out,” he said. He also organized 15 seminars in five cities (Delhi Hyderabad, Pune, Mumbai and Bangalore) for staff of the hotels to understand the GST.

Chartered accountants, too, said they were handling changes to be made in the inventory of their clients.

“Earlier there was a sale-based system now it is product-wise. Things will change; like use of processed milk will change to use of unprocessed milk. As a CA, I’m constantly in touch with my clients to prepare the inventory because in a few hours, the stock will be rescheduled,” said Rohit Mishra.
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