Uncool tomato juice

by Cem Basman

I really hate hate hate people drinking tomato juice ("Salt'n pepper?") on planes:

It's been an in-flight mystery: Why do grown-ups ritually drink tomato juice and ginger ale on airplanes, but not, statistics show, on the ground? No one has explained the bizarre phenomenon...until now.

Read on blockheads >



OMG!!!! I have had this thought about this matter for years.


Bruce Elgort, 2006-02-23

So you hate me. :-)

I only drink tomato juice on planes. And I don't drink it often. But I do have a reason. Let me explain:

Most of my air travel is 8 to 14 hours. I never have 1 hour flights. Long flights wear you down. They dehydrate you and you don't get enough exercise. Therefore I avoid alcohol and soda drinks. Alcohol for obvious reasons and soda because I don't want gas.

Still I need to drink a lot. Almost a liter for every two hours. I also cannot drink large quantities of orange juice, since it makes my stomach sour. Which leaves me with my not so secret air travel diet: apple juice and water. If you drank that long enough, you need something "salty". Tomato juice.

There you have it.

Volker Weber, 2006-02-23


Can you say water?

Bruce Elgort, 2006-02-23

Bruce, can you read water?

Volker Weber, 2006-02-23


:-( My eyes were temporarily on strike.

Bruce Elgort, 2006-02-23

I drink ginger ale on flights because
1) It doesn't have caffiene
2) It is the best alternative to the diet caffienated drinks that are on offer.

Ginger ale has marginally fewer calories than a can of Coke or Sprite (120 vs. 150) and feels more satisfying, imho, than Sprite does.

Of course today, I slept through the beverage cart service.

Ed Brill, 2006-02-24

I can't speak to the ginger ale. I *do* drink it on the ground, but only serious brands. (I.e. they have real ginger in them, not cheap fizz).

OTOH, I'm definitely in the tomato-in-the-air crowd. For me, it's because tomato juice is more "filling" than most other juices. They no longer feed us on domestic flights, so tomato juice - with a squeeze of lemon, please -- is a bit of a snack. (I'm also an apple juice girl, but that's equally true on the ground.)

Esther Schindler, 2006-02-24

I've wondered about this as well for some time but figured it had to be some diet issues to get what you need. But now, Cem, I'm wondering about something else: What's so bad about someone drinking tomatoe juice next to you that you hate them? Do they make you drink their tomatoe juice? Do they spill it over you?

Ragnar Schierholz, 2006-02-24

I do drink Ginger Ale on the ground and in the plane whenever I get the opportunity since it's my favorite kind of soda, yet it is hardly being seen in Switzerland. : (

Philipp Sury, 2006-02-24

I have to "admit" that I developed a habit of drinking tomato juice regularly, on the ground as well as on planes. I've become used to see expressions of distaste or even disgust from colleagues or friends, but "hate" is a really strong word.

Martin Switaiski, 2006-02-24

The caffeine, calorie and "it's a salty snack" argument all make some logical sense, though that doesnt explain why the same logic doesnt lead people to drink those beverages more "on the ground".

Come on... it is trapped pack-rat mentallity. It's just like how people savor a mini-bag of nuts or pretzels on a flight, but the same snack handed to them on the ground would be rejected. The mind clicks into "airplane" mode... jokes have been made about it for years... and though "hate" is the wrong word... some of us watch it happen and laugh at those people that are just the punchline of an old Seinfeld joke.

James Artest, 2006-02-24

Interesting story - but I like vowes explanation much better.
I myself drink tomato juice. Airborne and on the ground. No difference. So I guess I am one of the few.

Thomas Nowak, 2006-02-25

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