Southwest Airlines Will Sell Alcoholic Beverages on Flights Due to Customer Demand

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Due to customer demand, Southwest Airlines will begin serving alcohol on their flights again. The Airline reportedly stopped offering such beverages due in part to rowdy passengers. 

Starting Feb. 16, passengers will be able to purchase alcoholic beverages on any Southwest airlines flights traveling 176 miles or more, according to a company press release.

“Customers have expressed a desire for more beverage options, so we’re delighted to restore additional onboard offerings as a part of the Southwest Hospitality that our Customers know and love,” Tony Roach, vice president of customer experience and customer relations, said in a statement.

The alcoholic beverages that will be available for on-board purchase include a variety of beer, wine and liquor, including vodka, whisky, bourbon, rum and tequila. Non-alcoholic offerings include tonic water, apple juice, Coke Zero, Dr. Pepper, hot tea and hot cocoa, the airline said. 

Food and beverages were first restricted on flights nearly two years ago in March 2020, during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. While many airlines resumed selling alcohol in May 2021, Southwest Airline waited, citing an industry-wide increase in unruly passengers at the time, The Wall Street Journal reported

TWU Local 556, which represents Southwest flight attendants, expressed outrage with the airline’s decision to resume alcohol sales, the news outlet reported 

“We have adamantly and unequivocally informed management that resuming sales of alcohol while the mask mandate is in place has the great potential to increase customer non-compliance and misconduct issues,” Lyn Montgomery, president of the union, said in a statement.