United Airlines resumes hard liquor sales

Pete Muntean, CNNPublished 15th November 2021
In this Oct. 15, 2020, file photo, a United Airlines airplane takes off over a plane on the runway at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco.
(CNN) — United Airlines is once again serving hard liquor on its flights, a service it stopped early in the pandemic.
Starting Monday, United is selling mini booze bottles in economy class on domestic flights of more than 300 miles "in response to the feedback we've received from both customers and flight attendants," according to a statement from the airline.
"The ability to offer a complete food and beverage menu is something that we know is important to our customers," United said.
The airline said new contactless payment technology has enabled it to safely resume beverage service. United resumed serving beer and wine, and introduced hard seltzer, in economy class in June.
The move to restore liquor comes as incidents of violent and belligerent passengers on US airlines continue to rise.
Flight crews have reported more than 5,100 cases of unruly passengers to the Federal Aviation Administration since the start of the year. The agency has said many cases are fueled by alcohol.
Last week, the FAA announced fines against 10 violent airline passengers totaling $225,287, the second biggest announcement of fines for unruly passengers since the agency enacted a no-tolerance policy earlier this year.
American Airlines has suspended alcohol service in its main cabin until January 18, 2022, when the transportation mask mandate expires.
Southwest Airlines says it continue the suspension of alcohol sales until at least next year.