Using wifi during flights is a great way to pass the time and even get some work done but it usually comes at a price.
Unless you’re flying Jetblue (possibly some other airlines), you can expect to pay from $5- $16 during a flight unless you have a monthly pass. (Prices are based on what it costs to use Gogo Inflight.)
What if there was another way to pay for inflight wifi rather than cash. Would you consider paying for wifi with miles?
United plans to offer passengers the option to pay for inflight wifi with their frequent flyer miles.
A little over a week back, “United began testing a web portal…that lets customers use award miles to access the Internet on their laptops, tablets and smartphones, making it the first U.S. carrier with the feature“, according to Reuters.
The option should be on most domestic flight at the beginning of 2016 with international flights being completed by the summer.
Reuters mentions how this could be a move for United to “win over customers”. To me winning over the customers would be offering the service for free. However, a United VP said that there had to be a cost involved or the speed of wifi service could be slow if everyone onboard tried to use it. Interesting point but how is Jetblue able to offer it?
No mileage cost was listed for passengers wishing to pay for wifi with miles but the article mentioned that the prices will vary based on supply and demand. It sounds like United will be offering surge pricing similar to Uber but with miles!
Reuters mentioned that Lufthansa charges 3,500 miles or 9€ for an hour of internet.
Would you be interested in paying for United wifi during a flight with miles? At the prices listed above for Lufthansa, I’ll pass.
The only way I could see using miles to pay for wifi would be if I had some expiring or a small amount left in my account.
Find out more from Reuters here.