Airport chaos continues: TUI asks passengers to bring their own food and drink onboard

Airline passengers face many challenges this year
Airline passengers face many challenges this year Copyright OLI SCARFF/AFP or licensors
By Lorna Parkes
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Passengers prepare for uncomfortable flights as TUI warns that a shortage of catering is affecting food and drink supplies on its planes.


Passengers on TUI flights have been warned that they may need to bring their own food and drink onboard in the coming weeks.

Staffing problems at the company’s catering supplier mean that, for now, they can’t serve hot or cold meals and sandwiches on short and mid-haul flights. The snacks and drinks they are able to provide could also be “limited.”

In a statement, the company said it was contacting customers to advise that they bring their own supplies on board.

“Customers may therefore want to bring their own food and soft drinks onboard (no alcohol permitted). Any soft drinks over 100ml will need to be purchased after you have passed through security,” TUI said. 

But buying food and drink airside may prove difficult for those caught up in the long check-in and security queues that have caused chaos in the UK and Europe in recent weeks.

TUI passengers have been warned that sandwiches and snacks may not be available on short-haul flightsCanva

Airport staff shortages have left thousands of passengers running for their flights with no time to shop once they make it airside.

Last week, the Airports Council International (ACI) warned that delays were inevitable at most European airports this summer because of understaffing caused by a lack of financial help for the airline sector during the pandemic.  

What TUI flights will I have to buy food and drink for?

TUI stressed that the problem would not affect meal services on its long-haul flights to Aruba, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Mexico, Orlando and St Lucia.

Of the 21 airports that the British-German holiday company operates from, 15 are affected by catering problems: Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Doncaster Sheffield, Dublin, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Humberside, Leeds Bradford, Luton, Manchester, Norwich and Teesside.

“Please be assured we are continuously monitoring the situation and working closely with our suppliers to limit the impact to the onboard service for our customers,” TUI said.

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