American Airlines To Begin Offering Free Ad-Based WiFi

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Summary

  • American Airlines will soon allow passengers to use miles for WiFi, with an option for ad-sponsored free WiFi on domestic flights.
  • The airline also keeps enhancing onboard entertainment with streaming options, including content updates and wellness programs for passengers.
  • In response to the industry trend, airlines are increasingly offering free WiFi to stay competitive and attract travelers seeking connectivity.

American Airlines is tweaking its policy a bit regarding how passengers can access WiFi onboard its aircraft. In the next few weeks, passengers will get the option to pay for the service using their miles or even opt for free accessibility, which is sponsored by ads.

New WiFi options

If you’re booked to travel on a domestic American Airlines aircraft in the coming weeks or months, then chances are you can use your AAdvantage® miles to access onboard WiFi. The carrier has announced that it will start rolling out this new feature in the next few weeks on some select aircraft and will include it on all of the airline’s Viasat-equipped narrowbody aircraft by the summer season.

American Airlines Boeing 737-800 landing at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport DFW shutterstock_2418144695

Photo: Markus Mainka | Shutterstock

However, there’s something for passengers looking for a free WiFi option as well. American Airlines will allow ad-sponsored WiFi across 100% of American’s Viasat domestic narrowbody aircraft. The carrier also promises longer gate-to-gate connectivity on mainline airplanes from the moment passengers find their seats until they deplane at their destination.

American says that these onboard internet connectivity upgrades will be powered by a new design for the WiFi portal that will offer a more user-friendly purchase process with “fewer clicks and effective direct-to-customer communication through strategic pop-up messaging.”

But what if you are traveling on the carrier’s regional aircraft? American and Intelsat will start with the installation process of high-speed WiFi on nearly 500 dual-class regional aircraft this summer so that its customers across all routes can stay connected.

Related


American Airlines Is Bringing High Speed WiFi To 500 Regional Aircraft

The airline already offers WiFi onboard its mainline fleet of more than 1,000 aircraft.

Onboard entertainment options

American offers streaming capabilities on its entire mainline fleet, allowing travelers to access one of the regularly updated 1,500 pieces of free content on inflight entertainment. The airline updates approximately 200 titles monthly inspired by current entertainment trends, such as award-winning films each year and other specially curated content.

American Airlines Boeing 737-823 (N358PW) taking off from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

Photo: Robin Guess | Shutterstock

For toddlers, the carrier also offers baby sensory videos through its new exclusive partnership with Hey Bear Sensory, and passengers looking for wellness options can find custom content like meditation, affirmations, seated stretches, self-care, and more wellness categories through American’s partnership with FitOn.

Related


Inflight WiFi: How Does It Work?

Inflight WiFi operates on a mixture of air-to-ground and satellite systems.

Increased connectivity

From being a novelty a few years ago, WiFi access is fast becoming mainstream across all global carriers. Airlines understand the need for passengers to remain connected during the flight and are even using this to market their onboard service to attract more travelers.

Many airlines are now offering free WiFi on their planes, which is rapidly becoming one of the primary factors in how customers choose the airline they travel on. Singapore Airlines started offering unlimited free WiFi in all travel classes last year, while Etihad and Emirates both include free WiFi for the members of their respective loyalty programs.

A Singapore Airlines Boeing 787-10 on an airport apron.

Photo: viper-zero | Shutterstock

JetBlue offers unlimited WiFi to all travelers at high speeds, and Delta Air Lines has also started offering free WiFi to all SkyMiles members. As the services in the aviation industry evolve, airlines will have to include free onboard connectivity options to stay competitive.

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  • American Airlines Tile
    American Airlines

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    AA/AAL

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Hub(s):
    Charlotte Douglas International Airport, Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, Miami International Airport, New York JFK Airport, LaGuardia Airport, Philadelphia International Airport, Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport

    Year Founded:
    1926

    Alliance:
    oneworld

    CEO:
    Robert Isom

    Country:
    United States

    Airline Group:
    American Airlines Group

    Region:
    North America

    Loyalty Program:
    AAdvantage



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