American Airlines announced plans to reintroduce beverage services to their flights with plans to bring back their buy-on-board food program later this summer.
Beginning May 1, all domestic premium cabins will reintroduce full complimentary beverage service, including alcohol, canned drinks, juice and water.
Starting June 1, beverage service, including canned drinks, juice and water, will begin in the main cabin.
Later in the summer, full main cabin beverage service, including alcoholic beverage options, along with American’s buy-on-board food program will be reintroduced.
“The safety and well-being of customers and flight crew on board is a top priority for American,” the airline said in a press release. “This has been the guiding strategy for bringing back more inflight services in a careful and thoughtful way to ensure flight attendants and customers feel safe and comfortable.”
American said they worked hand-in-hand with the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) and experts from Vanderbilt University Medical Center as part of American’s Travel Health Advisory Panel to determine to the safest way to carefully return the food and beverage program.
“American’s reintroduction of beverage service is a careful and informed process to ensure everyone on board feels safe and comfortable,” said Brady Byrnes, Vice President of Flight Service. “When customers fly with American, they are trusting us with their safety. We worked closely with the union that represents our flight attendants, the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, and medical experts on this process. Through our partnership, we collectively determined that the timing is right to bring back this service, and we can do so while continuing to give customers peace of mind.”
American Airlines said feedback from flight attendants and customers will be closely considered as more food and beverage service is introduced incrementally.
Customers will also be reminded of face covering guidelines throughout their time traveling with American.
In accordance with federal guidelines, American requires face coverings to be worn at all times at the airport and onboard the aircraft and can only be briefly removed while the customer is eating or drinking.
To make flying easier for customers as they return to the skies, American will continue to update the travel experience page on aa.com for customers to reference as they plan future travel, especially as American incrementally builds back its food and beverage program.
Southwest Airlines is also serving a limited selection of non-alcoholic beverages and snacks on flights over 250 miles, when available.