airberlin first German airline to offer inflight Internet on short-haul flights
The airberlin group has equipped the first two aircraft in its fleet with the new "airberlin connect" Wi-Fi service.
The airberlin group has equipped the first two aircraft in its fleet with the new “airberlin connect” Wi-Fi service. The two Airbus A320, registered D-ABNJ and OE-LEL, now boast a Wi-Fi system from Panasonic Avionics Corporation, so passengers can access the Internet with their own smartphone, tablet or laptop during the flight. In addition, passengers on short- and medium-haul flights will enjoy an entertainment offering with TV series, movies and music available for streaming to their own device with the new Wi-Fi service. Passengers will be able to choose their own personal entertainment from more than 180 hours of media. On long-haul routes, passengers will continue to enjoy the RAVE in-seat entertainment system.
“With the new Wi-Fi service, our passengers can stay online during the flight and stay in touch with their families, friends and business partners. We will gradually expand the new service to almost the entire fleet. airberlin is the first German airline to offer inflight internet access not only on long-haul flights, but also on short- and medium-haul flights. We are very pleased to work together with Panasonic to offer our passengers an innovative Wi-Fi product that further adds to comfort on board our aircraft”, says Wolfgang Prock-Schauer, Chief Executive Officer of airberlin.
Paul Margis, President and Chief Executive Officer for Panasonic Avionics Corporation, said “Wi-Fi is a vital part of the inflight experience because travellers expect to be perpetually connected and because airlines want to leverage connectivity to improve operational efficiencies. We are very honoured to work with airberlin to deliver a solution that meets their unique technology and business challenges. With our eXConnect service, airberlin has chosen the industry’s most capable, platform-agnostic, and scalable broadband service available today.”
The first two aircraft equipped with airberlin connect will service the new Stuttgart-Abu Dhabi and Vienna-Abu Dhabi routes. The first flight from Stuttgart to Abu Dhabi takes off on 1st December 2014, bringing in-flight internet to passengers on this route for the first time. On the new Vienna-Abu Dhabi connection from Austrian subsidiary NIKI, passengers will be able to use the new on-board Wi-Fi service as early as November 24th, 2014.
airberlin offers various time and data packages for airberlin connect: for just 4.90 euros, passengers get online above the clouds for 30 minutes, including 20 MB of data. An hour of internet access, including 50 MB of data, costs 8.90 euros. The price includes use of the entertainment selection, which is available for the entire duration of the flight at no additional cost, even after the package time or data limits are used up. Passengers who wish to be online during an entire medium-haul flight can select the 13.90 euro package, which includes 90 MB of data, while the Full Flight Package for long-haul flights costs 18.90 euros, and includes 120 MB of data. Packages can be conveniently paid by credit card via the web browser on passengers’ own mobile device or laptop.
On the new Stuttgart-Abu Dhabi and Vienna-Abu Dhabi connections, passengers can enjoy the entertainment offered by airberlin connect free of charge. Internet access during the entire flight to or from Abu Dhabi on these routes costs just 13.90 euros, including 90 MB of data.
airberlin plans to complete equipping its fleet within three years.
airberlin is one of the leading airlines in Europe and flies to 171 destinations worldwide each year. The second largest airline in Germany carried more than 31.5 million passengers in 2013. airberlin offers a global route network through its strategic partnership with Etihad Airways, which has a 29.21% share in airberlin, and through membership of the oneworld® airline alliance. topbonus, the frequent flyer program of airberlin is one of the leading programs in Europe with more than 3.5 million members. The airline with the award-winning service operates codeshare flights worldwide with 19 airlines. The fleet is among the most modern and eco-efficient in Europe.