Inflight Wi-Fi is good. Even better is free inflight Wi-Fi.
No, there’s no industry trend toward offering free onboard Internet access among the airlines—JetBlue is the exception—as there has been among the major hotel chains. And there isn’t likely to be any time soon. The economics of Wi-Fi-in-the-sky and Wi-Fi-on-the-ground are different. And besides, charging for inflight Wi-Fi generates tidy profits for the airlines, which they aren’t likely to forego without lots of pushback.
For now, how about one hour of free Gogo Wi-Fi, and unlimited texting, for a few days? That’s what’s on offer from T-Mobile, but only through November 26.
To take advantage of the free access, travelers must be flying on Gogo-equipped domestic flights, have a T-Mobile plan, and a smartphone.
T-Mobile made a similar offer earlier this year. It’s part of the company’s quest to establish itself as the preferred mobile service for travelers, overseas travelers in particular. The company’s Simple Choice plan can be configured to include unlimited data and texting in more than 140 countries, and calls cost a very reasonable 20 cents a minute.
For shorter flights, an hour of free Wi-Fi is all that many travelers need, and represents a welcome savings over paying for the privilege. And the unlimited texting makes a good deal even better.
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- The Trump Effect on Travel: Some Early Indicators
After 20 years working in the travel industry, and 15 years writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.