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First bags, now booze: American Airlines raising drink prices

Dawn Gilbertson
An American Airlines flight attendant serves drinks to passengers after departing from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport in Texas.
Robert Alexander | Archive Photos | Getty Images

American Airlines will start charging more for alcoholic beverages on Oct. 1.

The world's largest carrier is boosting the price of beer, wine and liquor by $1 each. Sparkling wine is the only drink that won't cost more. It remains $9 and is only available on select flights.

American spokesman Sunny Rodriguez said the airline has improved its in-flight drink options over the past few years, most recently adding three craft beers.

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The new prices and the airline's fall drink lineup:

Beer: $8 for Bud Light, Dos Equis, Heineken, Goose Island IPA, Samuel Adams Octoberfest and Fat Tire Belgian White.

Spirits: $9 for Bacardi rum, Baileys Irish Cream, Bombay Sapphire gin, Canadian Club White Label, Dewar's White Label, Disaronno Amaretto, Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey, Tito's Handmade Vodka and Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.

Wine: $9 for La Noria Tempranillo Cabernet Sauvignon, Les Papillons Grenache Rose and La Montagne Noire Sauvignon Blanc

Sparkling wine: $9 for Casa Gheller Brut Prosecco on Hawaii and select transcontinental flights.

American passengers who sit in the airline's cushier Main Cabin Extra section in economy receive free drinks, as do travelers in first class and business class.

Southwest Airlines raised its drink prices on March 1. The nation's largest domestic carrier charges $6 for wine and select beer and $7 for spirits.

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Key Points
  • American Airlines will start offering Calm, a mindfulness and relaxation app, on all domestic and international flights starting Oct. 8.
  • Calm created three exclusive sessions geared toward the specific stressors that can accompany air travel.
  • Calm competitor Headspace started working with Virgin Atlantic in 2011 and now offers its in-flight mindfulness exercises on 11 eleven airlines, including United Airlines and Delta Air Lines.