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Is drinking alcohol on a plane a good or a bad idea? We asked ChatGPT

Drink but drink responsibly


Everyone will have happened to be travelling on an aeroplane next to someone whose first thought upon reaching their seat is to order alcohol.

Beer, prosecco, gin and tonic: on flights, even low-cost ones, nowadays you can find anything to drink and for many it is the right way to start a journey by relaxing and socialising a little. Some people who don't like to fly drink to sleep easier, while for others it is just a shortcut to land already tipsy for a fun-filled holiday.

Many times I too would have liked to try drinking on the plane, but my already less than idyllic relationship with flying and the not exactly popular prices of alcohol on board have always made me give up. For now.

In view of future travels, however, I asked ChatGPT whether he thinks this suggestion is a good or a bad idea.

Drinking with awareness

“Drinking alcohol on a plane can be enjoyable if done with awareness and responsibility” is the premise ChatGPT feels compelled to make, in a patronising tone. Then he continues: “Always consider your personal tolerance, the conditions of the flight and your overall health before deciding whether or not to drink”. Translated from chatbottese: if you can handle alcohol well, you are healthy and there is not too much turbulence on board, drinking is Ok.

One must, however, knows one's limits. "Limit yourself to one or two drinks at most", specifies the AI, worried perhaps that her own advice is a free-for-all for me and anyone else reading. "This amount is generally considered safe and can contribute to relaxation without causing significant negative effects."

What alcohol to drink and how to drink it

A glass of wine or a beer "have less intense effects than a strong cocktail or hard liquor," he recalls. That's why they are preferable in flight if you don't want to sleep badly and wake up with an annoying headache just when we should be starting to visit our destination.

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Always valid, even for the chatbot, the golden advice of doctors and mothers to also drink water while taking alcohol to prevent dehydration and to always accompany it with something to eat.

Risks to avoid

If you drink on an aeroplane, however, there is some risk, as a recent medical study cited by the New York Times also pointed out, which advises against drinking for those with heart, lung or sleep apnoea problems. In fact, drinking at altitude reduces the level of oxygen in the blood and increases the frequency of heartbeats.

On longer flights, the effect of alcohol can be more pronounced and contribute to jet lag. In addition, ChatGpt points out, 'excessive drinking can lead to inappropriate or problematic behaviour, disturbing other passengers and cabin crew'.

Don't jeopardise your holiday

These are all things to be avoided, warns OpenAI's artificial intelligence, reminding that 'the goal is to enjoy your trip' but also 'to arrive at your destination in optimal condition to start your holiday.

I will try to remember this when I finally pluck up courage and order a moscow mule at an altitude of 10,000 metres.



Illustrazione di Gloria Dozio - Acrimònia Studios