View From The Wing shares of being denied water as a pre-departure beverage on British Airways. This has happened to me so many times I now have a way to deal with it.
Being Denied Water In Business Class Is Actually Not So Uncommon
Gary was flying from Austin to London and flight attendants offered a pre-departure beverage choice of orange juice or “Champagne” (probably just sparkling wine). He asked for water and was told, “You already have a bottle of water at your seat, sir.”
British Airways business class pre-departure beverage, I was just denied a glass of water.
Champagne and orange juice only: "You already have a bottle of water at your seat, sir." pic.twitter.com/rzyr5M19S2
— gary leff (@garyleff) November 22, 2023
He was surprised. I’m not. This has happened to me often on United and happened to me on my last American Airlines flight (from New York to LA).
To be clear, I find this unacceptable. Rather than pushing cheap swill or sugary OJ, flight attendants should be happy to accommodate requests for water, which keeps passengers hydrated, healthy, and well-behaved.
The problem is that if you consume your water bottle before the flight, there is often not another one to replace it. That water bottle, for me at least, is critical when I wake up…I want to stay hydrated, especially on an airplane, and rather than having to flag down a flight attendant or walk up to the galley, it is great to have water at your seat.
Denying a request for water is pure laziness.
But since that is the reality (it has happened on a least five United flights over the last few years plus the recent American flight), I now take the water bottle that is placed on my seat and hide it. If a flight attendant tells me, “You already have a bottle of water,” I ask him or to her to point it out.
Often, I will order seltzer water even if I prefer still water just to avoid the “you already have a water bottle” quip.
Until airlines start boarding extra water bottles, cabin crew should stop telling passenger to drink their in-flight water bottles before the flight even takes off. And even if there was enough water bottles for every passenger to have several, it is also nice to sip water from a glass rather than a bottle.
To flight attendants: just say yes.
It is more common than you might think to be “denied water in business class.” While this is pure laziness, the path of least resistance is just to hide your water bottle so that you get another one or a glass of water and don’t have to hunt down a flight attendant in the middle of the flight when trying to sleep.
Finally, and just as a point of comparison, I was not denied pre-departure water on my last British Airways flight in Club World.