A plane was forced to make an emergency landing to eject seven passengers following a mid-air fight between members of a stag-do party and another group of men, which involved one man “spitting” at a woman.
The easyJet flight from Manchester to Tenerife had to divert to Portugal when a brawl between two groups of men broke out around two hours after take-off.
According to witnesses, a group of four male passengers started punching each other at the back of the plane.
Cabin crew tried to dispel tensions by seating one of the group at the front of the aircraft, but the fight then broke out again when the man rejoined his friends.
Passengers attempted to break the fight up, which is when one of the men allegedly spat in a woman’s eye.
The captain then made the decision to divert the plane to Faro, where seven men were taken off the plane by airport security.
Eyewitness Nathan Belford, 30, said a 10-man stag party on board the plane then "howled with rage" and picked a fight with both cabin crew and another group of four.
He said the stag party "complained bitterly to the stewardess" and said some passengers "started pinching drinks from the front of the plane".
“We couldn’t believe what was happening. We just wanted to go on holiday," he said.
“Things first kicked off when the group at the back got into a fight. Punches were thrown, and the stewardess broke them up.
“But then they kicked off again, and passengers actually intervened to calm them down.
“One woman got in the way, but a guy spat in her eye. It was disgusting.
Video captured by a passenger shows cabin crew trying to break up the row.
“There’s children on the airplane,” one woman can be heard shouting. She added: “He spat at a woman. No respect whatsoever.”
A man can be heard saying: "He f****** spat on a woman - dirty bastard."
The plane continued its journey to Tenerife two hours later.
An easyJet spokesman said: “We can confirm that flight EZY1903 from Manchester to Tenerife on 3 October diverted to Faro as a result of some passengers on board behaving disruptively and was met by police on arrival.
“The passengers were removed by police and the aircraft continued onto Tenerife.
“easyJet’s cabin crew are trained to assess and evaluate all situations and to act quickly and appropriately to ensure that the safety of the flight and other passengers is not compromised at any time.
“Whilst such incidents are rare, we take them very seriously, and do not tolerate abusive or threatening behaviour on board.
“The safety and wellbeing of customers and crew is our highest priority.”
It comes as the number of drunk and disruptive passengers arrested on planes at UK airports fell by 25 per cent last year, data from a Freedom of Information request revealed.
Some 87 travellers were arrested on planes from April 2018 to April 2019, compared to 117 during the same period the previous year.
At Gatwick and Glasgow airports, the number of arrests almost halved year-on-year.
However, 245 people were arrested on suspicion of being drunk at an airport between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2019, leading to renewed calls for further restrictions on alcohol sales. UK’s busiest airport, Heathrow, recorded the highest number of arrests in that time (103).