Sunday, November 15, 2009

I completely fail to see where this £709 million nail in the coffin of pubs comes from. Surely it's going to knacker the vending machine companies but it's not going to affect my pub's income one bit and I struggle to see how it's goign to hit other pubs substantially differently from mine.

I have no idea whether my experience reflects that of pubs across the UK but over a decade ago the revenue from a cigarette machine in my pub was substantial. The machine began with 20 cigarettes for not much more than the shop price, over years that eroded into packs of sixteen for a fiver. Unsurprisingly ncome reduced to a trickle and frankly the machine taking up space, occasionally breaking down while irritating customers who thought we were trying to rip them off made having the machine seem like more hassle than it was worth. The looming smoking ban didn't augur well for sales either.

We've been selling cigarettes from behind the bar for a long time now - it works fine and is more part of the service we offer along with all the other products we sell than a significant income stream.

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