21st May , 2018
Business meetings were traditionally lunchtime affairs and until the mid 1980’s were exempt from any taxable implications. That all ended in 1986 when business lunches– often lengthy and extravagant – amongst other benefits became contenders for FBT. At the time this caused a furore in Australia. Restranteurs were panic stricken believing their lunchtime trade would disappear and executives quaked at the thought of having to pay for their lunchtime jollies. However, once initiated these fears were short lived and the business lunch continued to be a useful means for entertaining clients or having discussions with peers or other associates out of the office environment. The excesses of the 1980s and early 1990s played a more significant impact on restaurants as they became a ‘discretionary’ spend rather than a business necessity. Still business people need to eat and business meetings need to happen. As an alternative to lunch time meeting the breakfast meeting gained popularity. Starting early, breakfast meetings do not take out such a large chunk of the working day, for the most they are less costly, less formal, usually without alcohol, usually not so filling as lunch, and business people are often ‘fresh’ at the start of the day. Although most restaurants are not open for breakfast, many city and suburban hotels, cafes and catering businesses provide for the business breakfast meeting. In the past breakfast was in some circumstances considered to be a poor alternative to lunch, however it is nowadays a worthy alternative to the more time consuming option of lunch.