Multiple airlines stop serving alcohol, food on planes in response to COVID-19 pandemic

WASHINGTON -- The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated the air travel industry. Airlines saw steep drops in revenue due to travelers being stuck at home and a reduced need to travel with businesses closed amid lockdowns.

As part of continued efforts to maintain traveler safety, multiple airlines have reduced the food and offerings during flights. If you are traveling in the near future, here is what food and beverage options you can expect to be served on each airline:


Delta, one of the largest airlines in the world, said that it is temporarily moving to essential food and beverage offerings on board and is also adjusting its in-flight service policies, both for domestic and international travel.

The new changes include:

    American Airlines

    While American Airlines has not updated its “Food and Lounge Service in Response to COVID-19” page since April 27, previous changes made in response to the pandemic include:

      United Airlines

      Starting March 29, United Airlines implemented the following food service changes to help maintain passenger safety:

        Southwest Airlines

        On June 1, Southwest updated its snack and beverage policy for flights over 250 miles:

          JetBlue Airlines

          JetBlue noted that complimentary food and beverage service would still be offered in a limited capacity in response to the pandemic:

            Alaska Airlines

            Alaska Airlines is recommending that passengers pack their own food and refillable water bottle. They have also implemented the following changes:

              Hawaiian Airlines

              Hawaiian made the following changes for passengers aboard its North America and international flights:

                Frontier Airlines

                As of May 12, Frontier is offering limited beverage options available for purchase on its flights in response to the pandemic. “These items are will be provided upon request,” the airline stated.

                The risks of flying amid the COVID-19 pandemic

                The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has said that travelers face an increased risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19 and that “staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others from getting sick.”

                For those who do travel, the CDC recommends that you wash your hands often with soap and water, avoid touching your face, keep a safe distance away from others, cover coughs and sneezes, and wear a mask in public.

                The CDC also advises individuals to anticipate their needs while traveling, such as bringing enough medicine to last an entire trip, packing alcohol-based hand sanitizer, and preparing food and water.

                A more detailed list regarding the risks of travel and how to prepare is available at their website.