Airports begin selling alcohol in sealed bags to quell wave of boozy passengers
By Ramzy Alwakeel
November 23, 2015
A pair of UK airports have begun selling alcohol in sealed bags that cannot be opened in-flight in the hope of cutting disruption caused by boozy passengers.
Aviation minister Robert Goodwill unveiled the scheme on Monday at the Airport Operators Association conference in west London.
Glasgow and Manchester airports are the first to test it.
Mr Goodwill said several airlines had written to the government to express concern about alcohol-related incidents.
“An aeroplane is a unique environment, a confined space, filled with families and other travellers, and while in the air out of the reach of traditional law enforcement,” he said.
“There’s little chance a drunken passenger could pose a threat to the plane itself, but some have tried.”
A woman on a BA plane from Heathrow to Boston was arrested last week after reportedly trying to force open an exit door.
“We don’t want to stop passengers enjoying themselves or prevent people from flying,” the minister told the conference.
“But we do want people to put a brake on before things get out of hand.
“Already, some airports are taking new steps. Glasgow and Manchester airports are trialling the sale of duty-free alcohol in sealed bags.”
He said airlines need to “look at their approach to serving alcohol on board”.
“For a proportion of passengers, their holiday begins in the airport bar, whether they arrive at the airport at seven in the evening or seven in the morning,” he added.
“Our aim should be to ensure that flying is a safe and enjoyable experience for all travellers, and that flying doesn’t end badly for the careless few.”
He also claimed at least one UK airport allows passengers to pull their own pints at the table.