Friday, December 14, 2007

Internet Flys High

Business travelers can spend a majority of their time thousands of feet above the ground, flying hours to get to a meeting or a conference. Laptops and wireless Internet have made it possible for these travelers to get some work done while waiting for their flights, but what about while they are in-flight?

Airlines are now addressing that question by offering, or by planning to offer, in-flight Internet and instant messaging.

JetBlue is one airline that now offers free email and instant messaging services on one of its aircrafts. American Airlines, Virgin, and Alaska Airlines also will be bringing the Internet to the sky in 2008.

What about those traveling without their laptop? For those travelers, Virgin America plans on linking technology to its seat-back entertainment system. This system would offer the ability to send and receive messages during flight, but not make phone calls.

"All of these new capabilities on flights will make business travel easier and much more productive. Within the next 10 years I believe Internet capabilities will be built into most aircraft. Technology is getting more and more advanced and the airlines will not want to be left behind," said Sabrina Whiting, director of sales and marketing at Travel Travel Carlson Wagonlit.

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