Last week, I took a Garuda Indonesia flight in economy from Jakarta to Hong Kong. The price was right and the schedule fit my needs (close to midnight departure and 6AM arrival).
I have previously flown Garuda twice; Bali to Jakarta years ago and Hong Kong to Jakarta back in June.
As I had been up quite late the previous nights and slept late in the morning, I didn’t expect to be able to sleep more than an hour during the flight and decided to check out a couple of movies.
Garuda has one of the smallest wine “glasses” in economy and the crew filled them up half. Each contained maybe a deciliter of red wine.
Two hours into the flight, I had had four of them and requested a glass of sparkling water with ice + another red wine. The crew member asked if it would be okay to serve the wine with the breakfast. I requested to speak with the purser and rather, she just brought the order. I requested again that I would like to have a word with the purser and she just said “really?”. Yes. Really.
The purser, who turned out to be Catholic, apologized for the flight attendant, who was Muslim. He said that they had plenty of stock for the flight and wouldn’t be running out. I just said that whatever religious beliefs a crew member may have, it shouldn’t affect how they serve if they are professionally trained.
Garuda Indonesia is a “five star” airline according to the Skytrax. The flight from Jakarta to Hong Kong had 41 passengers on an Airbus A330 that could have carried 215, so certainly not much work for the crew and thus no need for “rationing”.
Sometimes, I may have few a drinks during a flight and other times none. Four deciliters of red wine certainly doesn’t make an average western male intoxicated.
I don’t care whatever religious beliefs an employee might have, but he/she should not let them dictate how one performs at work.