Last call? Airport restaurants could face tougher licensing laws

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Airport restaurants could face tougher licensing laws
It could soon be last orders for the pre-flight pint under proposals put forward by the government.

The Home Office has launched a consultation on introducing licencing laws at restaurants and bars in airports in England and Wales.

It follows a rise in reports of disruptive passengers, with the Civil Aviation Authority warning travellers could face fines of up to £8,000 if a plane is diverted due to antisocial behaviour.

The sale of alcohol beyond security gates is not currently regulated, which the government says means rules to stop sales to drunk diners or prevent "irresponsible promotions” do not apply.

“This government is committed to ensuring that the travelling environment for airline passengers remains safe and enjoyable," says Victoria Atkins, minister for Crime, Safeguarding and Vulnerability.

A growing number of restaurant operators, including Spuntino and Barburrito​, are looking to expand away from the trouble-hit UK high street in to airside dining. 

The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) says the consultation raises “a number of issues that need to be addressed” but warned that imposing full licencing laws would be “unnecessary and overly restrictive”.

It says options such as best practice training and responsible alcohol management schemes such as the Best Bar None could be easily adapted to airside settings.

To take part in the government consultation click here.

Related topics: Legislation

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