This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Just a few years ago, having Wi-Fi at 35,000 feet was considered a luxury. Today, it’s pretty much a foregone conclusion — at least it is for American travelers hitting the open skies. Let’s take a look at in-flight Wi-Fi, by the numbers:
83%: According to a recent Los Angeles Times article, 83% of all seats on US-based airlines are now equipped for in-flight Wi-Fi — up from 74% in 2015.
28%: The same article, which collected data from Routehappy — a site that rates and tracks airlines and their amenities — says your chances of finding Wi-Fi service when traveling with an international carrier drops significantly, to just 28%.
3 airlines: Routehappy reports just three airlines offer Wi-Fi on 100% of their available seat miles (ASMs): Icelandair, Virgin America and Scoot, a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines. (Note that JetBlue recently shared the news that it’s rolled out Wi-Fi to its entire fleet as well.)
600 million: When it comes to Wi-Fi capabilities, Delta leads the pack, with more than 600 million of its ASMs ready to get you online (the airline recently equipped more than 66 million ASMs). United and Emirates filled out the second and third sports for most connected seat miles, respectively.
126 million: Though Emirates comes in third for Routehappy’s most connected airlines by total ASMs, it still tops the list for the biggest gain, having recently added 126 million Wi-Fi-ready seat miles. According to Condé Nast Traveler, this is due in part to the fact that the airline operates the largest fleet of Airbus A380s, the largest commercial aircraft. The carrier also tops Routehappy’s list for most Wi-Fi available on long-haul routes.
7 airlines: Routehappy’s 2017 survey concluded that seven airlines are now offering Wi-Fi on 100% of their long-haul flights: Delta, Etihad, Iberia, Icelandair, Lufthansa, Scoot and United.
7.2%: According to the Los Angeles Times, if you’re hoping to continue that Netflix binge-watch from your seat, you’re probably out of luck. Only 7.2% of airlines worldwide offer a strong enough signal to allow for in-flight streaming — though this number is increasing, albeit slowly; in 2015, only 6% of travelers could stream movies or video.
Featured image courtesy of Routehappy.
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 points! With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 60,000 point sign up bonus worth up to $1,200 in value, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards