First it was bag fees. Now American Airlines is raising the cost of — gasp — booze

The price of beer, wine and spirits will increase by $1 on American Airlines, starting Oct. 1.
(eyewave / Getty Images/iStockphoto)

A week after American Airlines raised its checked bag fees, the world’s largest carrier announced it will also hike the cost of beer, wine and spirits by $1.

Starting Oct. 1, the cost of a beer for passengers in the main cabin will rise to $8, while the price of wine and other spirits will increase to $9, American Airlines said.

“Over the last few years, we’ve continued to improve the selections available on board with more craft beer choices, premium liquor and new wines,” American Airlines spokesman Curtis Blessing said.


Beer, wine and spirits are free for passengers who buy higher priced Main Cabin Extra seats and elite members of American Airlines’ loyalty reward program, AAdvantage.

The price increase comes after the Fort Worth-based carrier matched the bag fee hike of JetBlue and United Airlines. On Sept. 21, American Airlines began charging domestic travelers $30 for the first checked bag, up from $25, and $40 for the second bag, up from $35.

Airline industry experts have said they expected the airlines to boost a variety fees to compensate for higher fuel costs.

The U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics reported last week that the U.S. airline industry — represented by the 21 biggest carriers — collected after-tax net profits of $3.4 billion in the April-through-June period, down from $4.7 billion in the same period in 2017. Profits are being eaten away by higher expenses, including fuel costs that rose 34.5% in the same period, the report said.

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