Last updated: 01:46 PM ET, Mon October 10 2016

In-Flight Drinking Advice From a Flight Attendant

Airlines & Airports | Patrick Clarke | October 10, 2016

In-Flight Drinking Advice From a Flight Attendant

PHOTO: Gin and tonic. (Photo via Flickr/Russell James Smith

Flight attendants will agree that there's nothing wrong with enjoying an in-flight drink or two, but just know that they aren't falling for your tricks to score an extra cocktail and are ready to cut you off as soon as you enter the "red."

MailOnline Travel recently polled an unnamed female flight attendant for an American airline to find out what the flight crew thinks of your in-flight indulgence.

Pointing out that being on a plane is "one of the only situations in which it's vaguely socially acceptable to day-drink by yourself," the anonymous flight attendant says its common for passengers to drink on a flight and that most who do will have about two drinks.

"One when service commences and another one with a meal," she told MailOnline Travel. "Then there are always the ones who can knock back four. It's easy to overdo it."

Passengers can easily surpass their limit because of several factors, including boredom and being stuck in their seat for hours. With nothing better to do, some passengers are likely to consume their drinks quickly and, since they're not moving, their bodies are metabolizing alcohol at a much slower rate.

Fortunately, flight attendants are keeping track of your drinks and are trained to know when to cut you off.

"We are trained to monitor people using a traffic light system," the flight attendant told MalOnline Travel "If you're exhibiting 'green' behaviors then we're fine to serve you, if you're moving into 'yellow' territory then it's time to slow down, and as soon as you enter 'red,' we cut you off."

READ MORE: How Much Do People Drink While Traveling?

Therefore, if you're stumbling to the bathroom or slurring your words, you're likely in the red and have probably had your last drink. 

The flight attendant admits that cutting someone off is always awkward and "embarrassing for all involved." But there are tricks flight crew use to avoid confrontation. "I quite often just pretend I haven't noticed the passenger who's waving me down for another drink until they give up. That or I just 'forget' their order."

Nonetheless she believes there are some key benefits to a couple in-flight beverages.

"To be honest, a drink or two makes most people more polite, friendly and mellow," she added. "Which is really the best mindset to be in when you're sharing a confined space with strangers."

So the next time you fly, drink up. Just remember to stay in the green.


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