High Cost of Onboard Snacks – Kayak

High Cost of Onboard Snacks – Kayak

Travellers expect to pay a bit more than usual for the convenience of enjoying their onboard snacks, but new research by reveals that in-flight prices can be over 200% higher than what the supermarket charges.KayakA comparison of two major airlines in Ireland found significant price increases on basic snacks and refreshments, with both domestic carriers charging up to €3.00 for a coffee. The worst offender is bottled water: a 500ml bottle of still water in a supermarket was found to cost €1, while onboard it cost over €3.00 – a markup of over 200%.

Research shows that wine prices onboard are just a little over the odds, with a 187.5ml bottle of wine costing passengers up to €6.00 onboard, while in the supermarket it would be less than €2.19 – a mark-up of just over 174%. However, compared to the mark-ups for all the other refreshments onboard, this could be considered a good deal.

Something to crunch?
Ryanair, perceived by most as the airline offering the lowest seat prices, was found to be the most expensive when it came to onboard snacks, with passengers paying €2.00 for a small bag of pretzel bites and €2.50 for a packet of crisps, the same price as for two large multi packs of crisps in the supermarket.

Butter croissants are also expensive: buying one on an aircraft costs nearly twice as much as in the shops surveyed. Ryanair is not alone in charging high prices. The price comparison snapshot by also found airlines routinely charged twice as much as supermarkets for chocolate bars.

Cashing in on beverages
On average, airlines charge €6 for a small bottle of wine, €4.75 for 330ml of beer and €2.50 for a 200ml can of soda, which is over 2.5 times more expensive than in a store. Orange juice was also found to be a big offender with an average price of €2.25 onboard (for a 150ml bottle), nearly as much as two large (900ml) bottles in a supermarket.

Suzanne Perry, Kayak, said: “Airlines are providing service when it comes to serving food and drinks onboard, which accounts for some of the mark-ups that we can observe – so they will argue that their prices are comparable to a coffee shop, bar or restaurant. However, the airline markups on bottled water seem particularly steep because travellers are unable to bring liquids of over 100ml through airport security and will therefore need to purchase drinks in the departure lounge or onboard. A timely pre-holiday reminder to make the most of the free drinking water fountains found in most terminals! Planning ahead by bringing an empty water bottle through security could help make some savings.”

Some of the other largest markups

Croissant – €2.50 onboard vs. €0.89 in supermarket, +180%; Noodles – €3.50 onboard vs. €1.44 in supermarkets, +143%; Sandwich – €5.00 onboard vs. €2.85 in supermarkets, +75%.

Click to add a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Michael Flood is the Editor of Ireland's leading travel industry publication, Irish Travel Trade News. With more than 35 years experience, he has accumulated an in-depth knowledge of the airline industry and the travel and tourism world.

More in News

Air France Hop!

Air France Extends Cork-Paris CDG Service to Year-Round Service

Neil SteedmanMarch 22, 2018
Irish Ferries Drayton Manor Theme Park

Irish Ferries Unveils Drayton Manor Theme Park Package

Neil SteedmanMarch 22, 2018
Job Opportunities

Cassidy Travel to Appoint Business Development Manager

Neil SteedmanMarch 22, 2018
View of Trinidad, Cuba, taken from a Bell Tower

Lainey’s Adventures: Touring Trinidad in Cuba

Neil SteedmanMarch 22, 2018
Royal Caribbean International’s Mariner of the Seas

Royal Caribbean International New Global Island Collection

Michael FloodMarch 21, 2018
B737 Max 8

Air Canada Switches to Premium Economy on B737 MAX 8

Michael FloodMarch 20, 2018
Commission for Aviation Regulation

CAR Publishes Advice to Department on Package Travel Directive

Neil SteedmanMarch 20, 2018
John Spollen, Cassidy Travel, receives the ITTN Industry Achievement Award

John Spollen Nominated Unopposed for ITAA President

Michael FloodMarch 20, 2018
travel deals

Great Value Travel Deals – 20th March 2018

Sarah SlatteryMarch 20, 2018

Copyright © 2016 Belgrave Group Limited, C4 Nutgrove Office Park, Nutgrove Avenue, Rathfarnham, Dublin 14, Ireland