Airline Wants Airports to Crack Down On Alcohol Sales — So They Can Sell You More Inflight

Nearly every inflight disturbance involves alcohol.

Last month before her flight a woman drank alcohol and then bragged she was rich, demanded more alcohol, slapped a flight attendant and banged on the cockpit door.

Here’s the woman being ejected from the aircraft in Dallas:

In May a Love & Hip Hop star was booted from a Delta flight for coming onboard glass of wine in hand.

A couple of weeks ago a drunk ‘girls gone wild’ bachelorette party was kicked off a Ryanair flight. In June drunk passengers met each other and simulated having sex in their seats on a Ryanair flight.

Alcohol and flying seem not to mix sometimes, especially on European low cost carriers.

Seeming to recognize this, Ryanair has called for airports to crack down on selling alcohol to drunk passengers. They want to ban sale of alcohol before 10 a.m. and to limit the number of drinks that can be sold to a passenger.

Ryanair even gets their moral indignation on,

Ryanair accused airports of profiting from allowing limitless drinking in terminals. The carrier’s marketing director, Kenny Jacobs, said: “It’s completely unfair that airports can profit from the unlimited sale of alcohol to passengers and leave the airlines to deal with the safety consequences.

Copyright: trevorbenbrook / 123RF Stock Photo

Here’s the thing, though: notice that they don’t want to stop selling alcohol themselves and in fact by preventing people from boozing it up before flight, they’ve got customers more likely to want to buy from the airline.

Ryanair flight attendants even have a quota for onboard sales.

The airline could choose not to sell alcohol on its flights. They could reduce the pressure on crew to generate revenue from inflight sales. They could take it upon themselves to prevent intoxicated passengers from boarding.

Instead they offer this crusade in the public interest to limit compensation in alcohol sales to Ryanair passengers. Mighty convenient, wouldn’t you say?

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Ryanair is just giving their boozehound working class crowd what they want: to be pissed morning, noon and night, and they want to reap maximum benefit. After all….they’re on holiday. 🙂

  2. More PR and airport bashing from Ryanair who funnel every kind of inebriate into the cheap drinking capitals of Europe as a core part of their business model. The system is already in place, as it is the airline gate staff, who (already, or should) turn the intoxicated back at boarding. Unless they’ve already fallen over at security or getting out of the cab. In the US, duty free is sealed at purchase and then handed over on boarding, hat tip to the wise.

  3. In their defence, I believe that Ryanair has actually stopped selling alcohol on regularly “problematic” routes. A quick search of Google News shows various announcements over the last few years, mainly about flights to Ibiza and Alicante.

  4. Hi from Scotland. So I watched the BBC “documentary” on this subject last night. They really ginned it up — but fact remains passengers in U.K. drink a revolting amount of alcohol before getting on planes *and* open up their duty free while on board. The documentary did point out one useful thing: why the hell are duty free shops selling miniature bottles in U.K. airports? Duh they are selling them so passengers can drink them on board. And that’s a problem. But seems they’re also drinking full-size bottles on board as well. Yikes.

    As a result I just booked a 6am flight out of Edinburgh for a Sunday morning. Let’s see how many drunks on board ….

  5. The sort of people who fly on Ryanair are more likely to be inebriates than not. Those are the Ryanair target group. Sorry to so disgustingly not PC but the truth is the truth.

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