Plane drunk: Ryanair wants two-drink limit for passengers

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That cheeky 5am pre-flight pint could soon be a thing of the past - if Ryanair gets its way.

The budget airline is demanding airports limit passengers to two alcoholic drinks to clamp down on booze-fuelled disorder on flights.

The Irish-based carrier says staff have had enough of abusive, drunken customers on flights - and has warned that airport bosses must act now.

The airline wants to see a ban on alcohol sales before 10am and reckons passengers should have to show their boarding pass before being served.

Ryanair says there has been a 600 per cent surge in on-flight disruption between 2012 and 2016, mostly alcohol-related – and the company has said it’s unfair that airports profit from the unlimited sale of booze while airlines are left to mop up the mess.

Ryanair says its rules, if introduced, would stop travellers getting drunk while waiting for planes and causing chaos in the clouds.

The firm said in a statement: “Ryanair has already taken a number of measures to prevent disruptive behaviour on its UK flights and customers are not permitted to consume their own duty-free purchases on board.

“Customers flying from Glasgow Prestwick and Manchester to Alicante and Ibiza are no longer permitted to bring duty free alcohol on board the aircraft - and those who have purchased duty-free alcohol will be asked to put it into the hold or leave their purchases behind.”

Chief marketing officer Kenny Jacobs added: “It’s completely unfair that airports can profit from the unlimited sale of alcohol to passengers and leave the airlines to deal with the safety consequences.

“This is a particular problem during flight delays when airports apply no limit to the sale of alcohol in airside bars and restaurants.

“This is an issue which the airports must now address and we are calling for significant changes to prohibit the sale of alcohol at airports, particularly with early morning flights and when flights are delayed.

“As the largest airline in Europe, Ryanair’s number one priority is the safety of our customers, crew and aircraft and we operate strict guidelines for the carriage of customers who are disruptive or appear to be under the influence of alcohol.

“Given that all our flights are short-haul, very little alcohol is actually sold on board so it’s incumbent on the airports to introduce these preventative measures to curb excessive drinking and the problems it creates, rather than allowing passengers to drink to excess before their flights.”

According to BBC’s Panorama, there were 387 arrests between February 2016 and February 2017, up from 255 - prompting the Home Office to consider formal controls.

Introducing its own guidelines on handling disruptive passengers, the United Kingdom Flight Safety Committee wrote: ‘Aggressive and threatening behaviour has unfortunately become more common in our society.

‘The problem of unruly passengers is constantly increasing within the airline industry.

‘Although unruly passengers represent only a minute proportion of our passengers as a whole, we must never forget that one aggressive passenger can jeopardise safety on board.

‘Unruly passengers affect all personnel involved in the process connected with a flight. Passengers who demonstrate behaviour of this kind are unacceptable’.