8 of the Worst Airlines for Food (Slideshow)
Shutterstock/Chris Parypa Photography
With Cheez-Its, Craisins, PopCorners, Terra chips, and other assorted bag and bar treats, JetBlue’s snack game is certainly on-point, but their meal selections will leave many customers disappointed. They serve a grilled chicken & brie sandwich, sirloin sandwich, spicy soba & Korean-style chicken plate, cheese plate, kale salad, and Chobani yogurt — but only if you’re flying from New York, Boston, or Fort Lauderdale to a handful of other airports. Everyone else will just have to settle for watching the Food Network on their headrest TVs.
#7 Southwest Airlines
We love that Southwest offers $5 beer, wine, spirits, and mixed drinks (and the first one is free on most holidays), but its food department leaves something to be desired. Unless you’re on a long-haul flight, you’ll have to make do with just complimentary peanuts and pretzels. It’s OK, Southwest, we still love you and your free checked bags… and also the fact that you serve wild turkey.
#6 Frontier Airlines
Frontier Airlines offers no meals and their snack selection is limited to only Chex Mix, M&Ms, beef jerky, Pringles, gummy bears, Rice Krispies treats, and trail mix. Yikes. It’s like looking into the kitchen cabinets of a frat house. However, the booze selection isn’t bad, as in addition to alcoholic drinks such as Jack Daniel’s, Dewars, Tanqueray, Woodbridge wine, Heineken, and Coors Light, they also feature craft brews from Fat Tire and Oskar Blues, as well as Infinite Monkey hard cider. So I guess it really is like a frat house.
#5 Spirit Airlines
Flying with Spirit Airlines is like going to a dive bar. There are no frills, the cost is incredibly low, the appearance is questionable, but it gets the job done. Since you have to pay for a carry on, pay to select your seat, and even pay for a boarding pass if you don’t print it at home, it should come as no surprise that food or drink of any kind are not included. Even if you want to cough up a few bucks that you no-doubt saved on your fare, there are no meals, and the snack selection is limited. Really, all you need to know is this statement, taken directly from Spirit’s website under the Onboard Snacks and Drinks section: “Save even more by bringing your own snacks for the flight.” Thanks, we will.
#4 Copa Airlines
Besides the fact that Copa Airlines clearly stole its logo from fellow Star Alliance member United Airlines, it appears as if they also steal some of their food from the dumpster. Okay, to be fair (or “fare,” because food puns), the food is actually hit or miss. Some passengers have reported perfectly fine meals, while others describe the cuisine as completely inedible. Our best advice? Skip the breakfast for sure. The scrambled eggs are a mess, and the sausage looks and tastes worse than a Kwik-E-Mart hot dog.
One of the biggest complaints when it comes to Russian airline Aeroflot is the food. The biggest gripe? It probably shouldn’t even be called food in the first place. The taste is bland, the preparation often results in either undercooked or overcooked entrées, and the presentation is nonexistent. The individual meals basically look like a store-brand frozen meal that someone pulled out of a 50-year-old time capsule. Don’t believe us? Click here to see some of the sad culinary creations. If you didn’t click that link, we should tell you it doesn’t lead to site cataloging bad airline food — it leads to Aeroflot’s official website.
Penny-pinching Ryanair passengers might be delighted to see some of the options on the in-flight menu — such as ham and cheese croissants, Mediterranean panini, and sweet and sour chicken — but try to remember what you ordered, because you won’t recognize it once you get served. Instead, most meals can be described as “goop.” Order the lasagna? You get a big ol’ pile of goop. Want to try the vegetarian flatbread? Goop again. Stick to the packaged snacks, or alternatively, you could probably just eat the menu. At least it isn’t goop.
#1 Air Koryo
Surprised to see a North Korean airline on this list? We didn’t think so. Interestingly, it isn’t the food amount that gets criticized by travelers, it’s the quality. Despite the ongoing famine in Kim Jong-un’s crappiest place on Earth, Koryo actually offers up quite the flight feast. However, the fare resembled something between a grade school cafeteria and a low-end fast food joint, and the airline was the only one in the world to receive a one-star rating from Skytrax. Their signature burger has been called “tasty” by some, but most others refer to it as “mystery meat.” On the plus side, there’s plenty of beer to help your forget the meal…and the fact that you’re traveling to North Korea.