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Café Sperl, one of the old Coffee houses in Vienna

Vienna launches campaign to help iconic coffee houses

Vienna launches campaign to help iconic coffee houses

After almost two years of restrictions and lockdowns, a lot of the small mom and pop cafes in the city are under threat due to months of missed revenue

Recently, local authorities in Vienna announced they would partner up with UniCredit, Bluecode and the Vienna Chamber of Commerce to launch a campaign to save the iconic Viennese Coffee houses. The campaign is called ‘Wir lieben unser Kaffeehaus’ (We love our coffee house) and it is set to launch on 15 January 2022.

It promises financial aid for coffee shops struggling after months of lockdown by offering financial stimulus for higher consumption, as well as a flat donation. The end of the campaign is set to when the funds are used up.

Drinking more coffee can save an iconic part of Vienna

The cafes in Vienna have survived a lot over the years, from the coffee boom in the 1950s to the real-estate crash in 2008. However, the uncertainty and lost revenue from the Covid-pandemic has caused never-before-seen problems for the small local coffee houses.

This is why in 2020, a private initiative called Das Wiener Kaffeehaus Club was formed, to help gather financial aid to support cafes. The club was able to collect 50,000 euros and they gave that money away in the form of rental aid. The ‘We love our coffee house’ campaign has already collected 100,000 euros.

The initiative will reward coffee houses with 5 euros every time someone buys something with Bluecode regardless of the amount of consumption. Bluecode is a financial service that provides contactless phone payments.

Furthermore, each month coffee houses that have joined the initiative will receive their payments based on consumption, while the remaining money will be shared equally among all participating cafes.

City Councillor for Economic Affairs Peter Hanke was quoted in a press release, saying: “The Viennese coffee houses are an important part of our urban culture. Great Austrian writers and artists were already inspired in the city's venerable cafés. It is all the more important that the Viennese can support their favourite coffee house with this great initiative.”

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