Wi_fi_plane

Wifi in the Sky is Taking Off

In Business and Currency, Travel by Continental StaffLeave a Comment

Whether flying for business or pleasure, it’s a bit of let down when you can’t catch up on your work or surf the web because you don’t have internet. This week Routehappy, a travel information company, released a study revealing the amount of flights with on-board wifi offered by the major airlines. The results were surprising, showing just how many airlines are supporting the new wifi craze!

Airlines that offer internet while flying

All of Virgin America’s flights now come with wifi while around 80% of Southwest flights also have flights with wifi. Meanwhile only about 40% of American/US flights and about 20% of United flights offer wifi.

Wi-Fi_graph_flights

Worldwide 25% of flights now offer wifi. Of non-US airlines Icelandair offers the most flights with wifi at just under 90%, in second is Norwegian Air with just over 80%. Meanwhile less than 20% of Qatar, Thai and Turkish flights have wifi.

Wi-Fi_flights_Planes_graph

Air Canada is lagging behind other airlines but does plan on making wifi available on “130 of its narrow-bodied, North American aircraft by the end of 2015.”

Wifi Improvements

In 2013, Routehappy declared the fact that “the availability of in-flight internet was far from ubiquitous. Where it was available, flyers complained of slow speeds and high prices. The landscape has since changed dramatically.”

In 2014 things began to improve dramatically leading Routehappy to celebrate it as a “banner year for connectivity in the skies.”

Now the company has lauded the fact that “wifi is widely available on both mainline and many regional connection flights within the US, and wifi on international flights has become much more common. The three major US airlines (United, Delta, and American) now have multiple aircraft types with international wifi installed flying on international routes, with aggressive roll out plans in place.”

Prices range from $4.99 to $49.00 for internet per day of flying and depending on whether you are using a mobile device or a computer.

In-Seat Charging

Wifi isn’t much good if you can’t charge your laptop or wireless device. Routehappy found that again, all of Virgin’s flights offered both wifi and in-seat power. About 70% of Alaska’s flights that have wifi also had power, just over 60% of United, 40% of American/US, and under 40% of Delta and Jetblue flights had both internet and power. No Southwest flights had wifi and power.

Looking Up

The overall trend is for wifi to become more and more common on flights, and in-seat charging will likely follow suit. One day it could be common to work, stream music and movies, and chat with your friends as you travel.

Stay informed. Stay Current.