Southwest Airlines hikes prices on inflight adult beverages

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Southwest Airlines is raising prices on its boozy beverages.

The Dallas-based carrier said inflight alcoholic beverages would see a “modest” price increase starting Wednesday.

Southwest said it decided to increase the prices of alcoholic beverages after conducting a review related to its fares. The last time Southwest increased alcohol prices was in 2018.

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With the increases, all liquor will now cost $9, up from $7; beer is now $7 instead of $6; and wine increased by $2, now costing $8.

Southwest said the increases ensure it stays competitive in the airline industry, and reiterated that customers still have the choice to select nonalcoholic beverages like water, soda, coffee, tea and juice for free.

However, those who are A-List Preferred members of Southwest’s Rapid Rewards program won’t necessarily feel the price increases. As part of the recent changes Southwest made to its frequent flyer program, A-List Preferred members get two free premium drink vouchers on every flight.

Southwest only brought back alcohol in February 2022. Earlier in the pandemic, Southwest scrapped alcoholic beverages from its inflight menu in order to reduce interactions between passengers and flight attendants.

However, Southwest ended up extending its pause on alcohol due to multiple passenger disruptions on board. In particular, there was one high-profile incident where a passenger assaulted a flight attendant, causing the flight attendant to lose two teeth, that sparked the extension.

The carrier’s price increases on alcoholic beverages comes as airfares are dropping as demand for travel returns to pre-pandemic levels. However, travel costs have been stubborn to decrease, as prices in the sector are still exceeding pre-pandemic levels, according to CBS News.

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