Enduring a flight in the middle seat: really bad. Enduring a flight in the middle seat with a cocktail in hand and vacation mode kicked into gear: better. Although some airlines make you pay for adult beverages, some—like the domestic and international carriers below—do not. Here’s the lowdown on drinking at 30,000 feet.
Passengers on Delta Shuttle flights can kick back with free beer and wine; those flying nonstop between Atlanta and Honolulu in the Comfort+ and Main Cabin get complimentary beer, wine and spirits.
Virgin Atlantic offers free booze on international flights from 12 U.S. airports (including Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Miami) to destinations in the UK, Middle East, Asia and Africa.
Passengers seated in the Main Cabin Select section (and first class) get free beer, wine and spirits.
AA serves free wine to passengers in the Main Cabin on flights between the U.S. and Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand and select Latin American countries.
You can score free beer in economy class on select Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific routes (such as flights between the United States and Argentina or Japan), plus flights between Singapore and Hong Kong.
Those bound for the Aloha State on Alaska Airlines get—what else?!—a free mai tai. And Horizon Air and SkyWest Airlines (Alaska’s sister airlines) both offer free beer and wine to all passengers on regional and shuttle flights longer than 60 minutes.
The budget carrier hands out free cocktails on Halloween and Thanksgiving. Otherwise, it's Coke Zeros (or ponying up the plastic) all around.
The Toronto-based airline, which serves 15 Canadian and eight U.S. destinations, offers free beer and wine (served in real glassware!) on all flights.
Passengers on long-haul international flights that include a stop in a Canadian city enjoy free wine or spirits. Example: If you’re flying from Toronto to Hong Kong with a stop in Vancouver, you’ll score your free beverage on the Toronto-to-Vancouver leg of your trip.
Free beer, wine and spirits (including tequila and sake) are served most of the day—between 11 a.m. and 4:59 a.m.—on flights that last at least an hour.
All passengers get free beer and wine, plus an aperitif, on long-haul flights. The wine list was created by Paolo Basso, who was named Best Sommelier in the World by the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale in 2013.
All flights on Germany's largest airline kick off with complimentary drinks service featuring wine and German beer.
Wines, spirits, beer, aperitifs and digestifs are all on the house during international long-haul flights, including those bound to, or originating from, North America, Central America and the UAE.
All passengers—including those in economy class—on all flights can partake in Japan Airlines’ generous selection of free booze, including beer, spirits, umeshu and Yvon Mau wines.
The South Korea–based airline pours complimentary wines in first, business and economy class.
The largest airline in the Middle East offers free beer and an extensive wine list (featuring wines from France, Germany, South Africa, New Zealand and the U.S.) to all passengers in all cabins.
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