While most budget airlines provide a no-frills experience and often nickel and dime their customers, Norwegian Air is now rolling out free Wi-Fi on long-haul flights. The airline, in 2011, was the first carrier to offer free Wi-Fi on all European flights. The carrier was also the first European airline to offer live TV when it introduced it in 2015. And now, Norwegian is the first low-cost airline to provide free Wi-Fi on intercontinental flights.
Passengers on Norwegian Air who are traveling between Europe, the United States, South America and Asia will soon be able to go online with the rollout of both free and premium high-speed Wi-Fi. This will be available on the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft and the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. The first plane to offer free Wi-Fi was a 787-9 Dreamliner that features Mark Twain on the tailfin. The plane has a tail number of G-CKWP, and it flies between New York, Boston and London.
By 2020, 14 of 29 of Norwegian's 787-9 Dreamliners should offer in-flight Wi-Fi. Norwegian will start the rollout on its Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in mid-January. There will be a choice of two packages, which are Basic and Premium.
The basic option is free, and with it, fliers will be able to browse the Internet, use social media as well as send and receive instant messages and emails. Users will be able to connect with their laptops, tablets and personal phones, for the full duration of the flight. The premium option allows fliers to stream music, Netflix, YouTube, and Hulu, among others. A three-hour package will cost €12.95 at an introductory price.
Not many airlines offer free on-board Wi-Fi. JetBlue offers free Internet to those flying domestic, Central American, South American and Caribbean flights. However, some airlines such as Singapore Airlines only offer free Wi-Fi to to their highest tier loyalty members and those in First and Business Class. With Delta looking to offer in-flight Wi-Fi for all passengers, things are looking up for those who want to stay connected while flying.