February 24, 2024

Alaska Airlines becomes first US airline to eliminate plastic cups onboard

Alaska Airlines has completed its transition to paper cups for inflight beverages, a move which eliminates more than 55 million plastic cups annually and replaces them with a more planet-friendly alternative.

All inflight beverages on Alaska flights are now served in Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper cups or reusable glassware for most First class services.

Alaska began the process of eliminating its five largest sources of plastic waste in 2018 by removing plastic straws and stir sticks from inflight service – a first for any airline at the time. 

By partnering with Boxed Water and serving beverages in responsibly-sourced paper cups, the airline is saving more than 2.2 million pounds of plastic from landfills a year – the equivalent weight of 24 Boeing 737s.

As part of its broader sustainability efforts, Alaska continues to pursue product innovations and supply chain advancements to achieve its 2025 goal of replacing the top five waste-producing items from onboard service and continuing to recycle.

In 2021, Alaska established climate goals for its impacts on carbon, waste and water while defining a five-part pathway to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2040.