Michigan Is Back Under Lockdown, But People Can Still Drink At The Detroit Airport

In person high school and college activities are shut down for 3 weeks in Michigan, along with in-restaurant dining. Bars are closed as well, in response to growth in Covid-19 cases. Movie theaters, bingo halls, casinos , ice rinks and other indoor congregant settings have been closed as well. Going to an extreme length, the Governor has even limited private gatherings inside of homes to just two households at any time. This includes the Thanksgiving period where reportedly 38% of Americans are planning to gather with 10 or more people.

Passengers in Europe have already figured out ‘the airport exception’ to government rules closing bars, and it seems that applies here in the States as well. Airports remain open as essential infrastructure, and continue to cater to passengers. In some places alcohol is banned in airports, but not in others.

The Detroit airport is government-owned and leases there are conferred by the government. The state’s lockdown order apparently doesn’t apply to drinking in the airport, so the Delta Air Lines Sky Club is reportedly still permitted to serve complimentary booze.

The same rules allowing Delta’s club lounge to serve alcohol despite the Michigan governor’s order closing bars should apply equally to restaurants in the airport for those who don’t have club membership and are willing to pay for a drink.

However it seems a lot easier for people to drink alone, as Michigan’s governor seems to prefer people in her state do, than make a trip out to the airport just for liquor. It would be fascinating to see Delta’s internal data over the next three weeks about whether alcohol consumption continues to track with passenger numbers, or whether it increases on a per-admittance basis in to the club.

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 InsideFlyer.com, 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. Delta could make a killing selling super cheap standby tickets that require an additional charge to actually board.

  2. Meh….normally there is plenty of space in a SkyClub. It isn’t a regular bar in any sense of the word. Now, Centurion Clubs, normally are too crowded to practice socail distancing. Again Delta wins!

  3. @Alan – it’s rhetoric like yours that echoes the temporary occupant of the WH and leads to Trump-supporting White Supremacists planning to kidnap and execute the state’s governor.

    Seriously, piss off.

  4. Who cares? Must be a slow anti-union, pro-libertarian news day? First came the multiple Dublin airport pub alerts on boardingarea.com ….. maybe folks can start reporting in the comments on what airports still have bars open? That’ll be as interesting as paint drying …..

  5. Even though DTW has a program to allow non flyers to enter the terminal, since a boarding pass for Delta flight is required for entrance, and Delta no longer sell day-pass, I doubt people will go out of their way for free cheap beer/wine when it’s easier to get it from the liquor store.

  6. @MAGA – on behalf of “real Americans” who support a decent, trustworthy, progressive incoming President-elect one who doesn’t lie and cheat and personally enrich himself from the Presidency – must really, really suck to be you and worship a LOSER! LOL.

  7. Once again the government is immune to the policies it sets for everybody else. So they can line their pockets and the little guy goes broke losing everything. The laws should include EVERY establishment. Not just ones that they are targeting!

  8. @Steve – let me guess…you’re a Trump supporter…? Nope, nothing delusional with that situation at all, nothing to see move along.

  9. @dee – your (note – the correct use of “your”, unlike yours) grammar sucks as much as usual! Educate yourself already.

  10. This is the most ridiculous article. Well before the new measures were announced most of the bars at DTW were closed. And the reality is that most people haven’t been to a Delta lounge. It’s literally a place to relax and get a way from the chaos.

    Yeah, you can get drinks there. But it’s not a bar. It’s a club. There is a difference.

    Flying right now is awful. You can hardly fault the governor for trying to manage a the crisis. She has a very limited tool set to fight with. Which is why the Feds need to take more aggressive action.

  11. @Ryan – if you do real math, 306>232 (electoral votes), or about +6,000,000 (popular vote).

    As y’all might have so elegantly said – “elections have consequences – fck your feelings”. Biden/Harris 2020!

  12. Bars and restaurants are non essential businesses. Yes that’s how many businesses make a living for themselves and their employees. When it comes to eating and drinking out, over saving lives in a Pandemic the latter has to be the rational choice. No outdoor dining or drinking is worth losing a life or causing someone else too. Don’t ask people to risk their lives to support your business. You can’t adequately mask and eat or drink period. My life doesn’t depend on you making a living and neither should anyone elses.

  13. @Barbara,
    True dat, “ You can’t adequately mask and eat or drink period. My life doesn’t depend on you making a living and neither should anyone elses.”

    However we should financially support these businesses who are so hard hit through no fault of their own through federal assistance. The govt (us) bailed out the airline industry, they should do the same for bars and restaurants. This is called mutual aid. When a catastrophe hits us individually, through no fault of our own, we need to offer aid to those suffering. We do it for other natural disasters, hurricanes, tornados and floods for example.

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