It’s happening! Free in-flight wifi it’s getting more common and more airlines are offering passengers access to high-speed connection during flights for free. And now, a major airline in the United States has just announced this new update.
There is only one small catch. Starting on February 1, Delta Air Lines will offer fast and free wifi for members of the frequent flyer program SkyMiles on board most domestic flights. Customers will only have to access their SkyMiles accounts from their personal devices and start browsing. If they are not registered, passengers can easily join the SkyMiles program before or during their flight for free.
By the end of 2023, the carrier expects to offer wifi service on 700 Viasat-equipped aircraft, and include all international and regional aircraft by 2024. Next month 500 Delta airplanes will offer the service in the United States and passengers can try the new high-speed connection onboard.
Delta is not the first major U.S. airline to offer free in-flight wifi, Southwest Airlines offers onboard free wifi to stream and watch certain shows but access is restricted, and to get unlimited access travelers must pay or be part of an elite status on their frequent flier program. JetBlue also provides free wifi service to its customers through their network Flyfi, and used to be the only airline offering internet connection for free.
Now that Delta is offering free wifi service it became an even more powerful competitor, adapting to travelers’ current needs, and gaining leverage against other airlines still charging for inflight wifi. Here’s what travelers should know about Delta’s new service:
How To Get Delta’s Free Wi-fi Benefit
All travelers who want to enjoy inflight connectivity will be able to do it for free flying with Delta—temporarily only on certain aircraft and during domestic flights. There is just once catch that passengers must sign up to up to SkyMiles if they are not already registered.
To join Skymiles, passengers will have to provide:
- Basic information: Name, date of birth, and gender.
- Contact information.
- Login information.
Once passengers have a Skymiles account, they can access the “DeltaWiFi.com” network from their personal devices—and even from multiple devices at the same time. This service will be available on 500 aircraft serving Delta’s most popular routes next month and more airplanes will be adapted to provide the new service within the next few months.
After joining the network, travelers can stream shows, watch videos, send emails, and scroll through social media. The experience should feel just like a regular ground internet connection.
The service has been powered by Viasat Ka-Band satellite connectivity and developed in partnership with the American wireless network operator T-Mobile.
An Alliance With T-Mobile
The new service provided by Delta is part of a joint project with T-Mobile. Both companies are committed to providing travelers with seamless connectivity.
The carrier expects to deliver a high-quality internet connection to allow travelers to vanish traditional connectivity restrictions during flights. Delta’ CEO Ed Bastian said in a recent conference: “At work, at home and everywhere in between, connectivity is essential to daily life, and your journey on Delta should be no different.” And added: “Our vision has long been to deliver an experience at 30,000 feet that feels similar to what our customers have available on the ground.”
Delta’s new partner already has experience providing inflight services and shares the same goals and vision. Mike Sievert, T-Mobile CEO, said: “T-Mobile customers already get free in-flight Wi-Fi and now we’re partnering with Delta to bring that experience to all customers — regardless of their wireless provider — so that anyone flying Delta can enjoy online access from takeoff to touchdown.”
Delta also announced a new platform, Delta Sync, for Delta SkyMiles members that helps travelers get the most out of their services. With the new app, Delta will provide travelers with personalized information about their trip and entertainment options during their upcoming flights, an experience described as an “ecosystem of digital services and experiences”.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com