Organising Christmas Markets? Fewer European Staff Requires A UK Solution

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And for customers and businesses alike, a particular highlight is the Christmas markets and Winter Wonderlands that light up our city centres.

For obvious reasons, this year’s festivities are more anticipated than ever, but the events of the past 18 months mean much has changed. The pandemic and Brexit have given rise to many obstacles, making it difficult for European staff to come over and work. As such, councils, event organisers and small companies could struggle to find the personnel they need this Christmas.

Here, we take a look at the complications around hiring European citizens for seasonal support, and how hap can help you solve the problem.

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A new playing field

Various legislation and restrictions are now in place, and, while acquiring European stalls and produce for these events isn’t an issue, securing the staff is where things get tricky. Here’s what’s changed:


As different parts of the continent navigate their way through the pandemic, travel limitations make it difficult to rely on an adequate supply of European staff. The UK’s traffic light system outlines set rules that must be followed. Although fewer restrictions apply to those who are double vaccinated, those who aren’t may have to self-isolate, causing complications for travelling staff.

On top of this, many workers may not feel comfortable going abroad during these times, whether it’s due to personal preference or medical conditions/vulnerability. And with the goalposts constantly shifting, there’s much uncertainty and unreliability around getting an appropriate number of staff to meet demand.


The UK’s Brexit plan came into force at the beginning of 2020, and as a result, it’s now much more difficult to obtain EU staff for short-term work. With last year’s Christmas markets called off, this winter will be the first time these effects are felt.

Presenting an EU passport or national identity card is no longer valid proof of someone’s right to work in the UK. Now, policies such as the EU Settlement Scheme and sponsor licenses present challenges when taking on European citizens for temporary work. This means businesses will need to rethink their acquisition strategies to ensure stalls and pop-up events are appropriately staffed.

Choose hap for your staffing needs

After a year off, you can expect the Christmas market crowds to be out in force as we approach the winter season. This presents a golden opportunity for small businesses, event industries and councils, and hap is here to guarantee you a temporary workforce that will keep you firing on all cylinders.

Our team members are trained, briefed and ready to hit the ground running on your stalls. We’ll even cover the finer employee details, while you make use of the extra numbers to fulfil the demands of Christmas shoppers. Not only that, our candidates are sourced from all over the UK and Ireland, so we can meet your needs wherever you are.

Ready to secure your flexible workforce? Contact us here. We’d be happy to provide you with the hard-working talent required for the season ahead.

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