Philippine Airlines has started to offer free Wi-Fi to passengers on its international flights.
Under the new initiative, PAL will provide 30 minutes or 15MB of complimentary in-flight Wi-Fi to passengers in all classes. If they want to connect for longer, passengers can choose to purchase a series of Wi-Fi packages. The free service was launched following a trial and is now available on all PAL aircraft equipped with Wi-Fi.
“The free Wi-Fi offer was very well received when we first launched it for a limited period. We are very proud to be the first airline in Asia to offer free Wi-Fi onboard for all passengers travelling on international flights that are equipped with the service,” PAL’s president & chief operating officer, Jaime Bautista.
“We continuously work towards addressing our passengers’ needs and have also come up with more affordable renewal price plans, and soon, access to high-speed internet even while flying at 30,000 feet,” he added.
Following the free 30 minutes, passengers can choose from a series of subscription plans, ranging from US$5 for 35MB of data to US$20 for 150MB.
The 30-minute service is likely to be popular however; in a recent interview with Travel Daily, Otto Gergye, Inmarsat’s vice president for Asia Pacific, revealed that the vast majority of passengers still use in-flight Wi-Fi simply to stay connected – sending and receiving emails and other messages – which only requires a limited amount of data use.
“Most people just want to stay in touch. The underlying sentiment is for communication,” Gergye told us.
While the majority of airlines still charge for in-flight Wi-Fi, some carriers such as Emirates also provide a limited amount of free Wi-Fi, while others include the service as part of their premium class bundles. Thai low-cost carrier Nok Air however, offers free in-flight Wi-Fi to all passengers.