Free In-Flight Wi-Fi for Travelers: This Airline Hooks It Up (If You Sign Up)

New York City, New York - March 1, 2020: Delta Air Lines Boeing 737-900ER airplane at New York JFK Airport in the United States.
Boarding1Now / Getty Images

Beginning Feb.1, Delta is rolling out free Wi-Fi to all passengers on most of its domestic mainline flights.

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Delta CEO Ed Bastian made the announcement Jan. 5 at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, noting that the service will be made possible through a partnership with T-Mobile.

“It’s going to be free, it’s going to be fast and it’s going to be available for everyone,” Bastian said.

To use the free Wi-Fi, here’s what Delta passengers need to do.

  • Sign up with Delta SkyMiles, Delta’s loyalty program, which is free to join. You can learn more and sign up here.
  • Use their mobile device or laptop to log into their SkyMiles account once aboard the aircraft in order to access the Wi-Fi.
  • If you don’t have a SkyMiles account, you will need to create one on your flight in order to connect while onboard.
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Delta’s free Wi-Fi will first be available on its Viasat-enabled mainline aircraft, and will later come to its other regional aircraft (and international flights) by the end of 2024.

“At work, at home and everywhere in between, connectivity is essential to daily life, and your journey on Delta should be no different,” Bastian said. “Our vision has long been to deliver an experience at 30,000 feet that feels similar to what our customers have available on the ground.”

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Delta is the first of the “big 3” airlines to offer free Wi-Fi to its customers. United Airlines and American Airlines both charge their passengers for internet access. JetBlue, though, has offered free (albeit bumpy) Wi-Fi on all its planes since 2017.

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About the Author

Nicole Spector is a writer, editor, and author based in Los Angeles by way of Brooklyn. Her work has appeared in Vogue, the Atlantic, Vice, and The New Yorker. She's a frequent contributor to NBC News and Publishers Weekly. Her 2013 debut novel, "Fifty Shades of Dorian Gray" received laudatory blurbs from the likes of Fred Armisen and Ken Kalfus, and was published in the US, UK, France, and Russia — though nobody knows whatever happened with the Russian edition! She has an affinity for Twitter.
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