Do you ever wish you could connect to the Internet while flying? Then Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines will be your best choices for this capability according to a new survey released on June 24th by Routehappy, which evaluates various amenities on flights. Â United Airlines is currently the worst choice.
Routehappy says fliers will get the most value from paying for Wi-Fi in economy class when there’s at least 30 inches between seats, which is enough room for someone to open a laptop. Fliers can count on Wi-Fi being available on 38 percent of domestic flights, during 44 percent of their flight time; longer flights have an increased likelihood of having Wi-Fi access.
Top carriers in Chicago, United airlines and American Airlines are currently fitting planes with Wi-Fi capability. Chicago flights in general aren’t likely to have Wi-Fi access; among the top 23 routes for Wi-Fi, only flights between Midway and Atlanta had Wi-Fi capability.
United Airlines is planning a satellite-based Wi-Fi, which means they’ll offer connectivity over the ocean. Most Wi-Fi during flights is currently available via ground-based service only; and only 6.5 percent of international flights have Wi-Fi, according to Routehappy.
An important feature for staying connected during a flight is in-seat power for devices such as tablets and laptops. According to the study, the best airlines for Wi-Fi with in-seat power are Delta and American Airlines.
Gogo Inc. headquartered in Itasca, Illinois, is the largest provider of inflight Wi-Fi; their Wi-Fi system has been installed on roughly 81 percent of Internet-enabled North American commercial aircrafts. The company said that within the first three months of 2013, 6.2 percent of passengers on Gogo-enabled aircraft used the service. All you need is a Wi-Fi enabled device, and a Gogo account. Gogo Internet operates on wireless signals that are provided by Gogo’s Air-To-Ground network, which is a network of cellular towers from sea to sea, so you know it’s going to be reliable. Gogo Internet is becoming available on more aircraft and routes nearly every day.