As Travelers Return to the Skies, No More Booze On Airlines

As Americans get set to begin their summer travel, a growing number of airlines are suspending alcohol sales in an effort to help curb aggressive behavior in the air.

American Airlines, United and Southwest all say they are cutting back on alcohol on their flights. They’re doing so, they say, in part thanks to a Southwest passenger who was caught on video last week punching a flight attendant. The flight attendant lost two teeth in the incident.

Given the recent uptick in industry-wide incidents of passenger disruptions inflight, we have made the decision to pause the previously announced re-start of alcohol service onboard June (Hawaii flights) and July,” said Southwest in its announcement.

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Southwest did not specify when it might re-offer alcohol.

American, will still offer alcohol in first and business classes, but will not offer it in the main cabin until September 13, when the federal mask mandate is lifted.

United, meanwhile, says it will only serve beer, wine and hard seltzer on some flights over 800 miles for the foreseeable future.

Many airlines suspended all alcoholic beverages during the pandemic in an effort to limit interaction between passengers and flight attendants and prevent people from taking off their masks.

In early Friday trading, shares of Southwest Airlines (LUV) traded up 0.14% at $58.34, American Airlines (AAL) traded down 1.16% at $24.64, and United Airlines (UAL) traded down 0.53% at $57.42.

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