Virgin Atlantic becomes the first airline in Europe to be fully WiFi connected

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 First airline in Europe to offer WiFi on all services – a year ahead of competitors

  • To celebrate Virgin Atlantic will host a series of #livefromvirgin events streamed from the sky
  • With partner Delta Air Lines, up to 39 flights per day across the transatlantic now offer WiFi

Virgin Atlantic has become the first airline in Europe to offer WiFi across its entire fleet – ensuring customers can remain connected across flights to and from the US, Caribbean, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

From today millions of customers travelling with Virgin Atlantic will be able to email, browse and socialise at 35,000ft from as little as £2.99 as the airline completes its ambitious WiFi programme – at least a year ahead of other European long haul carriers.

To celebrate being the first European airline to boast a fully WiFi connected fleet, Virgin Atlantic will be kicking off a summer long series of fun events from the sky, connecting together with #LiveFromVirgin.

Using a combination of Panasonic and Gogo technology, WiFi is now available across the fleet of 39 aircraft and connectivity is available above 10,000ft so customers will be able to connect shortly after take-off, and remain online until shortly before landing.

Results so far have shown that 42% of customers opt for the WiFi max package which lasts the entire flight, and the most popular routes for WiFi use are London Heathrow to New York (JFK), San Francisco and Atlanta.

Mark Anderson, Executive Vice President, Customer at Virgin Atlantic, said: “From today customers flying around the world with Virgin Atlantic can work and play throughout their flight as we become the first airline in Europe to offer a fully WiFi enabled fleet.”

“Innovation has always been in our blood and we’ve worked closely with WiFi providers to develop the fastest, most reliable connection across the Atlantic, and are the first carrier to offer WiFi between the UK and the Caribbean, China and Africa.”

“And of course we wouldn’t be Virgin Atlantic if we weren’t going to signify this moment with something special, so we’ve planned a summer of spectacular #LiveFromVirgin events for our customers. Keep an eye out on our social channels for your chance to get involved.”

Whilst WiFi has been commonplace on domestic carriers there’s been a challenge for the industry to find reliable connections over vast expanses of ocean – such as the Atlantic. Unlike flying over Europe or the US the signal cannot come from the ground, and instead has to be transmitted to aircraft from satellites.

The airline is using a combination of two WiFi providers across the network; customers travelling on the 787 will use WiFi from Panasonic, while the A330s, 747s, A340-600s are powered by Gogo technology.

Wi-Fi prices

Aircraft Pass Price What you get
787 WiFi light £4.99 40MB data
WiFi max £14.99 150MB data
A330, A340, 747 Messaging Pass £2.99 Messaging access throughout flight
WiFi light £4.99 One hour internet access
WiFi max £14.99 Full flight internet access 

As of today, Virgin Atlantic and partner Delta Air Lines will be the only fully connected transatlantic joint venture – keeping business customers and holidaymakers connected on up to 39 transatlantic flights per day.

Source: Virgin Atlantic

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About Tim Cosgrove

Tim Cosgrove heads two technology companies Co-Star and Cloud-Star who supply 4G LTE connectivuty products to the ICT industry globally and are based at Harrogate in the UK. Working at the forefront of the mobile communications industry gives Tim a unique perspective on the latest emerging technologies that help to improve how businesses and people communicate and operate in the future. Tim is keen to share his insights and passion for the latest technologies through the Co-star blog. Please get in touch if you have any technology related news or press releases that you would like us to share.