With airlines clamping down on unruly passengers by suspending onboard sales of alcohol, a story published Monday (Sept. 20) in The Washington Post reminds ticket holders that flights are absolutely not BYOB. According to the paper, “The FAA says regulations ‘prohibit passengers from drinking alcohol on board the aircraft unless it is served by the air carrier.’”
And to be sure passengers are aware of the restrictions, some airlines are incorporating the message in their preflight passenger briefings, along with reminders of mask requirements and other COVID-prevention measures. In a statement, American Air Lines said that preflight announcements will reflect new information on mask rules, coronavirus safety measures and “policies related to on board alcohol consumption.”
“These announcements are made regularly throughout the travel journey by gate agents, flight attendants and by pilots,” according to the statement. While Delta and United have resumed selling drinks in the main cabin, there are limitations based on the length of the flight.
American and Southwest Airlines have suspended alcohol sales in the main cabin until at least next January.
While much of the passenger misbehavior is charged to the mask mandate, airlines agree that alcohol is certainly a contributing factor. According to the FAA, over the past several months, more than 20 passengers have been fined for offenses, including drinking alcohol they brought onto the aircraft.