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Time difference means little Olympic benefit for local bars

Last Updated Feb 12, 2018 at 9:51 am PDT

(iStock Photo)
Summary

Industry rep says the timing of many Olympic events makes it tough on bars and restaurants to cash in

There's been no talk of extending bar hours for the sake of accommodating the Olympics

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Are you struggling to stay up to watch the Olympics live? Thanks to the 17-hour time difference between Metro Vancouver and Pyeongchang, local restaurants and sports bars are also suffering.

Ian Tostenson with the BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association says the fact that many of the events are happening late at night or early in the morning makes it tough.

“I think there’s nothing better than watching a lot of these sports live. And that’s where I think we’re going to really feel the… null effect of the Olympics from a hospitality prospective.”

Tostenson notes the lack of NHLers in men’s hockey will also mean there won’t be that incredible Sidney Crosby vs Alex Ovechkin buzz that there has been in the past.

But he points out something interesting happened this year ahead of the Games:

“One of the tell-tale signs is that no one has even raised the issue about extending bar hours for the sake of accommodating the Olympics. And that’s happened in the past.”

According to Tostenson, that means the industry no longer depends on big events like the Olympics, but he does admit bar and restaurant owners see the benefit of having them take place in a more friendly time zone.

The lack of NHLers in men’s hockey will also mean there won’t be that incredible Sidney Crosby vs Alex Ovechkin buzz that there has been in the past.

But Tosetnson says it’s not all doom and gloom. He says restaurants and bars did well with the Super Bowl just eight days ago.