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.

In-flight Wi-Fi is a luxury that many desire but few are willing to pay for. Save for the business traveler on the go, many reluctantly choose to part with their phones for a couple of hours in the air than to fork out $50/month for a monthly airline plan. That may all change, however.

Two weeks ago, US Mobile launched an unlimited Wi-Fi plan that will give users access to over 30 million hotspots in 120 countries for only $10/month — including in-flight Wi-Fi.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 10.42.21 AM

Why is this a good deal?

US Mobile’s unlimited Wi-Fi plan is similar to Boingo’s global Wi-Fi plan that comes complimentary for American Express Platinum cardholders. Besides the wider network coverage (30 million hotspots versus Boingo’s one million), US Mobile’s coverage extends beyond the ground to also include in-flight Wi-Fi — something Boingo does not.

In-flight Wi-Fi within the North America is primarily provided by Gogo, and the rates aren’t cheap. A hourly pass goes for $7 and monthly airline plans start at $49.95/month, limiting travelers to just one airline to choose from. In addition, international flights are not covered by most of these plans — except for the Global Delta Plan, specifically for Delta Air Lines.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 10.24.32 AM
Gogo in-flight Wi-Fi subscription plans start from $49.95/month on domestic flights

This is where US Mobile shines: It partners with both Gogo and Panasonic, providing in-flight Wi-Fi not only on domestic, but also on international flights. Within North America, the US Mobile Wi-Fi plan works on all Gogo-enabled aircraft:

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 9.58.09 AM

On international routes, the Wi-Fi plan will give you unlimited internet access on select airlines:

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 9.58.26 AM

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 9.58.17 AM

Let’s also not forget about the 30 million other hotspots around the world travelers will instantly gain access to with this Wi-Fi plan — perfect for those keen on exploring the top destinations in the world.

The Experience

Signing up was a straightforward process that was easily accomplished in under five minutes. I signed up using a 40% off promo code RPUSMWIFI that US mobile offered on Reddit, lowering the cost to $6. This code, unfortunately, was taken down within the hour after I’ve registered. Nonetheless, $10 is a very reasonable price to pay for Wi-Fi on one device — you can sign five devices up for the same price as a single device plan with Gogo.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 1.24.33 PM

Users will have to download the iPass app to bypass the sign-in and payment pages that most of these pay-per-use Wi-Fi spots have. Given how this service used to be targeted mainly at corporate clients, users are asked to enter their company email when launching the app for the first time. Fortunately, there is a workaround.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 1.19.58 PM

First, log in on the US Mobile website using the icon at the top-right to access the dashboard.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 1.44.42 PM

Click on “Check the Line” under WiFi plan 1 to access a page with more information about your plan, including a short troubleshooting guide at the bottom.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 1.45.05 PM

Follow the link and click on “Renew Wifi Plan.”

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 1.57.13 PM

On mobile, this should bring up the app on the phone and bypass the company email requirement. The iPass app can also be downloaded on Mac and Windows platforms, although there are also ways to access directly from the web browser (refer to this quick start guide).

Speaking to TPG, US Mobile CEO Ahmed Khattak mentioned that the company is aware of the set-up issues and is working towards improving the on-boarding experience for new users. The telco intends to roll out its own mobile app in the near future, with the possibility of integrating the iPass interface to make it a seamless process for users.

That said, connecting to Wi-Fi is still really easy. Hotspots that are part of the iPass network will show “Check for iPass” under the network name. Simply select one of these networks and the iPass app will do the rest. On a recent flight with Delta, I was able to connect to Gogo In-flight Wi-Fi through iPass, saving $16. Even without the promo code, US Mobile’s Wi-Fi plan has already paid for itself.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 1.20.11 PM

Since US Mobile aggregates and taps on other Wi-Fi networks, there is no difference in terms of connectivity and performance as connecting directly with Gogo (although I did secretly wish it will somehow miraculously become faster).

IMG_4451 2

While in-flight Wi-Fi is a huge reason to sign up for this, let’s not forget the millions of worldwide hotspots travelers will have access to with this plan. Although I wasn’t able to test this out, others have reported that it works really well in hotels and shopping malls.

Bottom Line

If you’re a business owner who needs connectivity on the go, a world traveler who’s hopping across different countries, or simply someone who needs to be connected with social media even when up in the air, $10 is a really reasonable price to pay for unlimited Wi-Fi across the world. With comparable connectivity speeds and worldwide network coverage both on ground and in air, this is perhaps the Wi-Fi plan to sign up for. We don’t expect this introductory price to stick on forever, so if traveling is on your cards, we’d recommend signing up now.

H/T: View From The Wing

Featured image courtesy of Juice Images via Getty Images.

The best beginner points and miles card out there.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 50,000 point sign up bonus, 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.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 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, 50,000 points are worth $625 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
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
17.99% - 24.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.