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Delta Flights to Europe - Complementary Wine?

Has anyone flown Delta (US to Europe) recently?

On our last flight, "after leaving US airspace", the wine was complementary.

Is this still the case . . . anyone?

Posted by
1831 posts

Airspace hasn't got anything to do with it. We get complimentary beer or wine between Seattle and Lewiston, Idaho on Alaska/Horizon.

Posted by
5664 posts

I think its still true but I abstain on the outbound as alcohol can disrupt the little REM sleep that I may or may not get. On the return I prefer a brew. (Delta partners with KLM. Dutch brews are better than cheap wine.)

Posted by
129 posts

Flight from London Heathrow in Oct 2012 - headed to Atlanta - Free Wine - It was Great!!
Hope it happens again on next flight!

Posted by
6370 posts

If you're traveling in economy comfort class or better, yes it's free. Traveling in economy, nope.

Posted by
333 posts

I was never offered complimentary wine on any Delta flight, Europe or Hawaii. Pop, water or coffee.

Posted by
5664 posts

...never offered complimentary wine on any Delta flight....

For those of in the PacNW, Delta code shares with KLM on the SEA-AMS transatlantic route.

Economy Class intercontinental
On all KLM intercontinental flights, we welcome you on board with a beverage of choice.... After dinner, we offer complimentary coffee, tea or a liqueur.
On longer flights, we serve a second meal. Depending on the time of day this will be breakfast, lunch or dinner.
We serve hot and cold drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic), including sustainable coffee and tea, soft drinks, fruit juice, beer and specially blended and pricewinning wine, together with your meal. Throughout the entire flight, we offer something to drink once every hour.

Posted by
166 posts

I flew Economy Comfort last July on Delta to Amsterdam. Economy Comfort is good for early boarding and being up front in the plane, but not worth the free wine or beer they tout as a perk. I got the 1st drink no problem, and then it took forever to get a 2nd one. So unless boarding earlier and being up front in the plane matters to you, save the $100 bucks each way and spend it on better spirits in Europe.

BTW, when I contacted Delta after my trip to complain about this, they never had the decency to even reply. Iceland Air might be a better choice. I will be trying them next trup to Europe.

Posted by
484 posts

I have received free mini bottles of wine in coach/economy class on airplanes with food served. However, it's healthier to avoid alcohol when flying and the free wine is not that great. So, skipping it isn't much of a loss.

Posted by
11613 posts

I agree with some, I turn down the free wine in favor of something non-alcoholic. Hydration is the priority for me. I don't think I would switch airlines over a glass of wine, I would rather keep the FF miles coming.

Posted by
1064 posts

I can understand how excessive drinking can aggravate health issues on a long flight, but has anyone seen any scientific studies to support the claim that a glass of wine early in the flight is bad for the average adult? A glass of wine with dinner relaxes me enough that I don't gag on the food, and the effect, besides being very slight, wears off within an hour; besides the alternative for me would be Diet Coke, which has caffeine. Sorry, but I could not eat airline food with just a glass of water.

Having said that, the only wines I have seen on Delta flights are Chilean wines like those found on the bargain shelf in supermarkets.

Posted by
1040 posts

We recently flew Delta from Boston to Amsterdam (economy class) and received free wine - two servings were offered. The flight home (Paris to Boston on Air France) included a glass of champagne. The food was much better on the AF flight.

Posted by
5664 posts

...has anyone seen any scientific studies to support the claim that a glass of wine early in the flight is bad for the average adult?

Not drinking enough water during your flight can dehydrate you. In
addition, drinking too many beverages with caffeine or alcohol during
your flight can affect your sleep and cause some symptoms of jet lag.

The Effects of Alcohol on Sleep
Faculty and Disclosures
QUESTION: What are the effects of alcohol on sleep?

When ingested by normal individuals, alcohol leads to a more rapid
induction of sleep. It also increases non-REM sleep and reduces REM
sleep during the first portion of the night. However, alcohol is
metabolized rapidly and blood concentrations are negligible by the
middle of the night for most individuals who have a few drinks prior
to bedtime, often resulting in withdrawal symptoms thereafter. These
may include shallow sleep and multiple awakenings, REM rebound
associated with nightmares or vivid dreams, sweating, and general
activation.[2,3] Therefore, although alcohol may be effective in sleep
induction, it impairs sleep during the second half of the night and
can lead to a reduction in overall sleep time. As a result, it can
also be associated with daytime somnolence. It is of interest that
alcohol's negative effects on sleep are even observed when it is
ingested in the late afternoon

Ref 2.Yules RB, Lippman ME, Freedman DX. Alcohol administration prior to sleep; the effect on EEG sleep stages. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1967;16;94-97.

Ref 3. Madsen BW. Rossi L. Sleep and Michaelis-Menten elimination of ethanol. Clin Pharmacol Ther. 1980;27:114-119.

The study also found that alcohol caused water losses of 10ml per gram
of alcohol. (6) Based on an average glass of wine, the alcohol content
will cause you to lose more fluid than is provided by the glass

This is estimated for a large (250ml) glass of wine of average
strength (13%).(8) The alcohol content of the glass is 32.5ml, which
equates to 25.6g of alcohol (based on 100% ethanol having a density of
0.789g/ml).(9)This means that the body will lose 256ml of fluid, which is a higher volume than the glass of wine itself!





Posted by
46 posts

Just flew to Amsterdam and back to U.S. from Amsterdam in April/May on Delta and yes, they served free wine and beer in economy class. Don't know how many glasses you got, because I was drinking water and Diet Coke! I believe it was primarily with the meal.

Posted by
3696 posts

I always fly Delta and on international flights no matter where I am sitting there is wine offered at least with dinner and often times once more. Maybe you should call the airline and ask?

Posted by
1831 posts

We always fly in steerage and coming back from Amsterdam to Seattle three weeks ago my wife got complimentary wine and the guy gave me several bottles of a pretty good single malt.

Posted by
71 posts

Flew Delta home from Paris last fall and complimentary alcohol was served in economy.

Posted by
5465 posts

I think most concur, Delta serves alcohol to all seating classes on trans-Atlantic flights. Where some confusion may come in is when they bring the cart around, they only ask what you want to drink..if you don't ask for a wine (or beer or cocktail) you won't get it.

Posted by
1819 posts

Actually I think the confusion occurred because Delta did discontinue free drinks in coach at one point They have backed off that decision and you can get free drinks. And in spite of the medical advice presented above by someone I will be drinking wine on my flight this month. LOL

As for "airspace" I have had that make a difference at least once. On one flight years ago the 'booze' on board was not US taxed for some reason so they couldn't open that stuff until we were out of the US LOL! I think it was just some stuff, but...

Posted by
18058 posts

Although United and USAir, which I have flown once each to Europe, didn't have complimentary wine, Lufthansa always has. I have actually slept better and felt better the next day on flights where I have had a few (i.e., more that two) glasses of wine during the flight. In my case it relaxes me. How else can I sleep in an aluminum tube full of people? But I never have hard stuff.

Posted by
1631 posts

I flew Delta/Air France last week from Paris in regular economy class. We were offered an aperitif or champagne before the meal, and wine with the meal. Food, drinks, and service was great. Seat room, not so much.

Posted by
1064 posts

It is funny what we miss when we post a message and forget to check back for responses, only to stumble on it much later. In a post above I asked for scientific evidence that a glass of wine with a meal in flight is harmful for adults. I see that someone posted studies that show 1.) several glasses of wine can be harmful, and 2.) a large glass of wine can cause a person to lose a modest amount of hydration. I agree that no one should overindulge alcohol in flight and would never advocate doing so. However, to set the record straight: 1.) I asked about one glass of wine with a meal, not several, 2} flight attendants do not serve large glasses of wine and 2a.) any dehydration from an average serving would be minimal and easily offset later by water that is offered by attendants at various times during the flight.

Posted by
5664 posts

...any dehydration from an average serving would be minimal....

Ripper: Have you ever seen a Commie drink a glass of water?
Mandrake: Well, I can't say I have, Jack.
Ripper: Vodka, that's what they drink, isn't it? Never water?
Mandrake: Well, I-I believe that's what they drink, Jack, yes.
Ripper: On no account will a Commie ever drink water, and not without good reason.
Mandrake: Oh, eh, yes. I, uhm, can't quite see what you're getting at, Jack.
Ripper: Water, that's what I'm getting at, water. Mandrake, water is the source of all life. Seven-tenths of this Earth's surface is water. Why, do you realize that 70 percent of you is water?
Mandrake: Good Lord!
Ripper: And as human beings, you and I need fresh, pure water to replenish our precious bodily fluids.

Posted by
10344 posts

Flying to Europe these days is unpleasant enough (the punishment for going to Europe) that it seems, if someone wants to have a glass of wine on their flight, well, maybe they shouldn't be judged. I dunno, it just seems that.....

Posted by
783 posts

Roy- There IS scientific evidence that alcohol can disrupt sleep and be dehydrating because it is activates the hormones that make you urinate. Both of these facts are well documented. The dose required to do this varies from person to person. And the severity of the symptoms can be different in the same person depending on other factors- what else they have been eating/drinking, other medications, level of sleep, how fast you drink it, baseline level of liver function, etc.

But is one drink on a plane "bad for you"? No. Some people are aware of how a small amount of alcohol affects them on planes and choose not to drink. Others know they will be okay.

EDIT: I didn't see that you had responded to another post. But again pointing out: The amount of alcohol required to cause the above effects is different for every person, every situation. If you give everyone on the plane one drink, you will see different responses.

Posted by
4365 posts

I can drink anywhere just fine ;-) I also drink at least the same amount of water as my wine/beer consumption. Very important...

Air space used to be The Deal, but not so much anymore. Although...for awhile in my lifetime airlines weren't allowed to serve drinks while flying over Kansas (nor Amtak trains...on the ground)...but that's another story ;-)

But the short answer is that these soon as it's safe for beverage service, there's alcohol. And it's free on "most long-haul international flights. on Delta (and most others, these days; some charged for a few years recently but relented. Smart move).