Restaurant software provider UMAI has launched a directory of Singaporean and Malaysian restaurants that sell gift cards and vouchers to customers.

The restaurant data is available on a site which lets customers check which restaurants sell gift cards and vouchers and allows them to make a purchase.

The move is aimed at helping restaurants to keep their businesses afloat during the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis.

The site currently features 130 restaurants that sell gift cards. UMAI intends to add at least 300 more restaurants to the list.

The site visitors can browse discounted gift cards – by area, cuisine type and so forth or search for a specific restaurant.

UMAI co-founder Jonas Chelbat said: “There are a lot of restaurants that are deciding whether they stay, is business or not.

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“At this point, the purchasing of gift cards is the best thing any of us can do to support restaurants — and its win-win.

“It’s like giving a restaurant or cafe a loan, and getting paid back in food, drinks and appreciation.”

Governments in most countries have imposed nationwide lockdown to curb the spread of the virus.

This is preventing restaurants from running their businesses.

Due to the virus outbreak, only a few people are dining out because of which restaurants are struggling to stay afloat.

Moreover, restaurants have been restricted to serve in-house customers as well.

By selling gift cards and vouchers to customers, the restaurants can use the cash to offset the income lost during the on-going crisis.

In a press release, UMAI noted that less than 1% of restaurants in the region are currently offering gift cards.

UMAI is offering the software for free on which the consumers around the world can buy gift cards and vouchers.

UMAI co-founder Alexander Small added: “We built this software so that consumers can purchase this on behalf of loved ones, support the less fortunate or simply for themselves during this difficult time.”