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Delta Air Lines

Delta is the Latest Airline to Raise Drink Prices

Delta is the Latest Airline to Raise Drink Prices
Jeff Edwards

Delta Air Lines announced that it will follow the lead of its competitors, raising the price of most mixed drinks, beer and wine selections served in flight. The carrier says it will increase the cost of cocktails, domestic beers, craft brews and wine for passengers in the main cabin. The price bump matches similar moves earlier this year by American Airlines and Southwest Airlines.

For passengers flying in Delta Air Lines’ Main Cabin, it will cost a bit more to take the edge off. The airline announced that beginning on December 1st, the price of most adult beverages went up by a dollar.

According to Travel+Leisure, the increase applies to cocktails as well as both domestic and craft beers, along with most wine selections. The price of a glass of bubbly will remain the same at $9 a glass, but a Bloody Mary or screw top California red will now also set passengers back $9. A Budweiser now costs $8 (still slightly cheaper than at most Major League Baseball games) and an onboard Heineken sells for $9.

Of course, these increases will only affect passengers flying Delta Main Cabin or Delta Basic Economy on domestic flights. All passengers of legal age are given the option of choosing an alcoholic beverage on Delta’s long-haul international flights. Passengers in the Delta Comfort Plus cabin are entitled to complimentary beer, wine and cocktails and the airline saves the good stuff, free of charge, for passengers traveling Delta First Class, Delta Premium Select and Delta One.

In March of this year, Southwest Airlines raised the price of its alcoholic beverages by between $1 and $2. The carrier’s prices remain a bargain compared to its competitors. Domestic beers are now $6, while imported and premium beers run $7. Wine is $6 a glass and liquor is $7 per drink.

Meanwhile, Delta rival American Airlines raised its alcoholic beverage prices by a dollar per drink in early October. The price of a domestic beer in its economy class cabin is now $8 and wine, craft beer, and booze have been raised to $9. The airline defended the nearly 15 percent price increase, noting better quality drink selections necessitated the increase in charges.

Over the last few years, we’ve continued to improve the selections available on board with more craft beer choices, premium liquor and new wines,” AA spokesperson Curtis Blessing explained at the time.

[Photo: Delta Air Lines]

View Comments (7)


  1. krlcomm

    December 11, 2018 at 7:53 am

    Generally speaking, the beer you buy at a sporting event is significantly larger than the 12 ounce can you get on an airplane.

  2. alexmyboy

    December 12, 2018 at 4:44 am

    Heineken is not a premium beer!

  3. Mtothe M

    December 12, 2018 at 5:24 am

    Question: Who needs to drink on a plane or at an airport anyway?

  4. Disneymkvii

    December 12, 2018 at 8:44 am

    What seems strange to me about this is the cost of the “goods” hasn’t increased that I can tell. A bottle of Jim Beam is still $12 like it was 8 years ago.

  5. spartacus

    December 12, 2018 at 1:16 pm

    The Pacifico or Corona bombers we had at a recent Oakland A’s game was $12. A 16-ounce craft brew in Kansas City is even less, so the analogy of a $8 rice water domestic product is akin to alexmyboy’s observation, as well.

  6. ColoBill1

    December 13, 2018 at 7:31 pm

    So airlines think that selling a mini bottle of Barcardi rum for an now increased price of $9, the same mini that sells at liquor stores for $1.25, can be justified? Yeah, sure.

  7. rjpjr

    December 15, 2018 at 9:10 am

    Next up – nominal charges for onboard snacks. Pretzels 50 cents. Cookies 75 cents. Premium cookies or ChexMix $1. Minimum purchase $1. No cash.

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