Insight | Inflight and in touch: How today’s passengers expect seamless connectivity


Inflight and in touch: How today’s passengers expect seamless connectivity


From our Passenger Experience Survey, we reveal the seven key trends and insights that form the cornerstone of passenger expectations when they fly.

With connectivity being a key factor in consumer decision-making, airline passengers now seek what they have on the ground, in the air. And airlines that prioritise dedicated Wi-Fi services, have the potential to differentiate themselves from their competitors and enhance the overall passenger experience.

Our latest passenger experience survey of 11,000 people takes a deep dive into the importance of inflight connectivity. These are the key stats that unveil just what it is that passengers expect, and how to meet those expectations:

97% of passengers use personal devices in the air

Familiarity with their own personal devices means passengers feel more confident using them in the air, wouldn’t you? These days just about every passenger brings a personal device on board – potentially creating a full-flight audience. This reiterates the importance of Wi-Fi, as enabling inflight activities and entertainment on these devices can play a significant part in the overall flight experience.

77% of respondents said Wi-Fi is important to them during their flight

Up from 55% when we first started tracking in 2018. This shows an unequivocal demand for inflight connectivity on today’s flights. Meeting these expectations has become key to a satisfying experience for passengers.

79% of passengers connected to inflight Wi-Fi when available

The importance of being connected during a flight is being matched with increasing uptake of the service. If a Wi-Fi service is available, more people are choosing to connect – be it through paid, freemium or advertisement gateways. This is the action and correlation that proves the desire of passengers to connect.

82% said they’re more likely to travel with an airline again if quality Wi-Fi is available

In the air, quality counts. Speed and reliability of Wi-Fi can make all the difference to whether customers return, or not. This figure jumps to a whopping 92% when it comes to business travellers. This goes to show the growing impact that reliable connectivity can have on an airline’s reputation and repeat business, in an infamously fickle market.

52% are willing to watch adverts to access free Wi-Fi

Over half of the survey’s participants said they would be prepared to make a concession by watching adverts in exchange for access to reliable Wi-Fi. This, crucially, opens up a world of commercial opportunities for airlines – and could help fund the investment in quality connectivity in the first place.

52% would want charging ports to make the most of inflight Wi-Fi

A draining battery is a drain on a passenger’s overall inflight experience. It’s no wonder charging ports top the list of desired features to help make the most of personal devices. When you consider 97% of passengers are using their mobile devices at check-in and while in the sky, it becomes a crucial point of difference.

47% are willing to avoid alcohol in exchange for reliable Wi-Fi

That’s right, almost half of respondents are happy to pass on the drinks trolley in favour of staying connected to the outside world. However, that doesn’t stop you serving up digital duty-free offers through your app or website. Cheers!

Airline passengers have high expectations for Wi-Fi, with fair price and connection quality being the two most important factors. A whole new world of commercial options and possibilities are made available to airlines by offering such a service. Learn more about the key role inflight connectivity plays when attracting today’s travellers.

To download the full survey results, please click below.