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Photo: Norwegian

Norwegian launches free long-haul Wi-Fi

The airline has started to roll out Wi-Fi connectivity on its long-haul fleet, including a high-speed option for a fee.

Norwegian is “upgrading the passenger experience for long-haul customers” with the introduction of inflight Wi-Fi on its long-haul fleet.

It says it will roll out Wi-Fi on more than half of its Boeing 787-9 aircraft, and the first long-haul aircraft with Wi-Fi has already taken to the skies. The airline’s Boeing 737 MAX aircraft will also get Wi-Fi on board.

The Wi-Fi for the full duration of long-haul flights will have a to-pay-for high-speed option fast enough to stream movies. The rollout is expected to be completed on more than 50% of its Dreamliner fleet by 2020.

Norwegian has in recent years offered free wireless internet use on most of its European routes, which are operated with Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

A similar move for its long-haul fleet will make it the first low-cost carrier in the world to offer free Wi-Fi on intercontinental flights, the airline claims.

This means that passengers flying between Europe and either North or South America, and between Europe and Asia, will have the chance free of charge to surf the web, read emails and stay updated on social media during the flight.

Pay to stream
Norwegian took delivery of its first Boeing 787-9 with Wi-Fi on board, with the registration number G-CKWP, on December 18. Wi-Fi deployment on the 737 MAX aircraft begins in mid-January.

The carrier’s long-haul fleet currently consists of eight 787-8 and 24 787-9 aircraft, and some of its 18 737 MAX 8s can also be used on transatlantic routes.

Long-distance passengers will be able to choose between two Wi-Fi packages – a free basic option and a premium option to pay for. Basic allows you to surf the web and send text messages and emails. Premium is a high-speed connection that allows you to stream music, movies and TV shows via, for example, Netflix and YouTube.

Premium is based on an introductory price that is “subject to change at various stages” as Norwegian analyses usage based on route, seasonality and market.

“Millions of Norwegian customers have already enjoyed free Wi-Fi over the skies of Europe, and now long-haul passengers can continue to rely on free and high-speed internet connectivity that will enhance and personalise their journeys,” said Boris Bubresko, vice president for business development.

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