Licensing Loophole Allows Alcohol to Flow Freely at UK Airports

Business, Travel News — By Lia Del Priore on October 28, 2010 at 11:00 am

We’re all familiar with the cliché of the bartender cutting off drinks to someone who has to drive at the end of the night, but how many of us guessed this rule wouldn’t apply to airports?  Thanks to a loophole in the Licensing Act not covering airport bars, international flyers in the UK can drink consequence free before boarding a plane.  The loophole not only dissolves legal consequences for disorderly conduct, but also allows minors to buy alcohol.

Let us ponder this for a moment.  Bartenders on the ground cut off a drinker from consuming too much alcohol not only so that they won’t drive drunk, but so that they won’t endanger the people around them.  Doesn’t this hold true to planes also?  Who wants to fly for 14 hours next to someone obnoxiously drunk?  According to the UK Telegraph and the Civil Aviation Authority, almost a quarter of airplane ‘incidents’ have been a result of a passenger binge drinking before boarding their plane.

These issues are currently under debate in the UK.  On the table, however, is merely a revision of current policies.  The Argus reports that it is doubtful that stringent regulations will be imposed that may hurt profitable liquor sales in airports; hence the dilemma.

Image Attribution to: wickenden/Flckr

Tags: airports, culture, drinking, news, travel

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