As of July 1, Singapore Airlines becomes one of the first international airlines to offer free and unlimited Wi-Fi to all passengers
Article by Tommaso Magrini
Surfing the Internet has become increasingly important, even while in the air. Singapore Airlines, reports the South China Morning Post, has joined the handful of carriers that offer free in-flight Wi-fi to all passengers and, starting July 1, customers will be able to surf without the usual charges or data limits. In-flight Internet has long been an inconvenient and messy add-on cost that is usually more trouble than it is worth, if available at all, and usually remains exclusive to those paying for a first or business class seat. Although time spent online has declined since the Covid-19 pandemic closures, in 2022 the 5 billion regular Internet users still spent more than six hours a day browsing and scrolling, according to We Are Social, a British company that tracks web and social media use. At the same time, air passenger numbers are on the upswing. According to the International Air Transport Association, global passenger traffic is back to 90 percent of its pre-Covid level in April 2023, meaning the world is on track to return to the 4.5 billion passengers carried in 2019, the year before the pandemic began and travel restrictions were imposed.
Hence, carriers like Singapore Airlines are banking on free Wi-fi to persuade passengers to choose the airline to fly with. Air New Zealand is the best airline in the world; Singapore ranks first in first class. "In today's increasingly hyper-connected world, in-flight high-speed Wi-fi connectivity is one of the most important requirements for our customers," said Yeoh Phee Teik, Senior Vice President Customer Experience at the airline. To access Wi-fi, passengers will have to sign up for the airline's free loyalty program, similar to how some of the few other carriers that offer free Wi-fi, such as Qatar Airways and Delta Air Lines, operate. Singapore Airlines said the offer will apply to 129 of its 136 aircraft, with the exception of seven Boeing 737-800 NGs that it says "are not Wi-fi enabled."