Five in-flight wifi services: how they compare

EMIRATES

AVAILABILITY On Airbus A380s and select Boeing 777s (may not be available in the airspace of a number of countries including China, India and the US)

SERVICE PROVIDER On Air

SPEED Typically around 100 kbit/s

COST Price plans start at US$2.75 per MB for smartphones and US$7.50 per 5MB for tablets and laptops

REMARK Emirates plans to integrate Panasonic Avionics’ Global Communications Suites into its B777s and future A380 deliveries.

www.emirates.com

 

THAI AIRWAYS

AVAILABILITY On Airbus A330-300s and A380s

SERVICE PROVIDER On Air

SPEED 432 kbit/s

COST 3MB for US$4.50, 10MB for US$14.50 and 20MB for US$28.50

www.thaiairways.com

 

SINGAPORE AIRLINES

AVAILABILITY On Airbus A380s and Boeing 777-300ERs

SERVICE PROVIDER On Air or Panasonic

COST Depending on the service provider, the cost of inflight connectivity could be either volume-based (eg US$5.99 for 5MB/US$9.99 for 10MB) or time-based (eg US$11.95 for 1 hour).

REMARK Volume-based price plans are only valid on the flight sector that they are purchased on. For Business Traveller Asia-Pacific’s review of the OnAir service, see here.  

www.singaporeair.com

 

JAPAN AIRLINES

AVAILABILITY On Tokyo (Narita) – New York/Chicago/Los Angeles, Frankfurt/Jakarta 

Tokyo (Haneda) – London/Paris

SERVICE PROVIDER T-Mobile

COST US$11.95/hour or US$21.95 for 24 hours

REMARK Once purchased, the 24 hour price plan will be available on JAL connecting flights as well. In addition, the carrier will also be introducing inflight connectivity to its entire domestic fleet. Gogo will be the provider for the new service.

www.jal.co.jp

 

Lufthansa

AIRCRAFT More than 90 per cent of the carrier’s long-haul aircraft offer inflight wifi. These include the airline’s Airbus A340s and Boeing B747-8s. Its A380s are gradually being fitted out with the service.

SERVICE PROVIDER Panasonic

SPEED Up to 5MB/s

COST €10.95 (US$15.05) per hour or €19.95 (US$27.42) for 24 hours

REMARK Lufthansa’s inflight wifi service can also be purchased using miles. A one-hour plan cost 3,500 miles; while the 24-hours plan will set you back for 7,000 miles.

www.lufthansa.com

 

Clement Huang


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