New coronavirus measures ban you from drinking alcohol on planes

If you’re a fan of throwing back a wine or two at 38,000 feet, you may need to start getting friendly with a softer alternative.

A number of popular airlines – including Easyjet and KLM in Europe, Delta Air Lines and American Airlines in the United States, and even Virgin Australia, are suspending all or part of their alcoholic beverage service in response to COVID-19.

Sure, booze has been booming during lockdown, but airlines say the reduction of alcohol and even food off the menu is just one step to minimise crew and passenger interaction during a flight.

Many airlines are limiting drink options to water only, while airlines like Qantas and Virgin Australia will be offering face masks to all passengers, as well as disinfectant wipes on board and ensuring social distancing measures are in place during boarding and disembarkation.

Overseas, some airlines are taking measures even further to keep passengers safe, with some enforcing a “no mask, no fly” rule on passengers.

Clinking glasses while up in the air will be on hold for a little while.Source:istock

In Europe, low-cost airline Easyjet – which commenced routes across the UK and France on June 15 – said passengers will be allowed to bring food on-board, because the only refreshment available during a flight will be water on request.

Virgin Atlantic, which will also be putting a ban on the booze, have announced they will be issuing passengers with “Health Packs” which will include a face mask, surface wipes and hand gel.

In the US, Delta Airlines isn’t serving alcoholic beverages on domestic flights but beer, wine and spirits will be available on any international service.

On rival American Airlines, food and drink will be limited to the duration of the flight. If you want a beer on board, you’ll have to book yourself a seat in first class for the time being.

Booze on board a flight may be a thing of the past, for a while anyway.Source:istock

Budget airline Southwest say they will also limit snack and beverage services, temporarily suspending it for flights of less than 400km and offering cans of water with straws and a snack mix on longer flights.

Virgin Australia, which went into voluntary administration in April, is serving all guests complimentary water and a snack, but additional food and drinks aren’t currently available for on-board purchase. Qantas passengers will experience a simplified service and catering to minimise touchpoints for crew and passengers.

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