Covid-19 has disrupted the world and certainly affected the codes of play in all industries, including airline operators. Just after countries lifted their city closures, airlines around the world implemented new flight protocols that included food service as well as alcoholic beverage serving regulations, and many airlines have eliminated the serving of alcoholic beverages altogether on certain flights.
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Typically, reducing in-flight service items will reduce the frequency of contact between crew and passengers and reduce the amount of time passengers have to take off their masks. Several airlines have now changed their catering services, and many are removing alcoholic beverages altogether on some flights.
US Domestic Airlines
Delta Air Lines does not offer alcoholic beverages on flights within the United States or on all flights to Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean and Central America. However, according to Delta"s website, other international flights will offer a full list of beverages, including beer, spirits and a limited amount of wine.
American Airlines states on its website that American Airlines will limit its in-flight food and beverage service based on distance and destination: for flights over 2,200 miles or 4 1/2 hours (including transcontinental flights and flights to Hawaii), alcohol will be served in First Class or to Main Cabin Extra passengers. For flights under 2,200 miles, no alcohol will be served in Main Cabin, while First Class will serve alcohol on request.
United Airlines (United Airlines) said it will no longer provide ice, coffee and tea and pouring service, only the premium cabin will provide beer and a variety of wines.
British Airways (British Airways) said on its website that the main cabin on short-haul flights will only provide boiling water, while premium cabins and long-haul flights will change the alcohol to miniature bottles or quarter bottles.
Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia are both temporarily cancelling alcoholic beverages on all flights. Virgin Atlantic has indicated on its website that only fountain orange juice and water will be available throughout the flight, while Virgin Australia has indicated that only water and snacks will be available.
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (KLM) said that spirits will be served in business class and beer and wine in economy class on intercontinental and intra-European flights.
From time to time in the past, passengers have been known to drink excessively on board, and the airline has made some changes in response to the epidemic, perhaps instead ensuring the safety and comfort of all passengers on the journey.