Inflight WiFi Comparison 2019

It’s now been 11 years since I first started using inflight WiFi. Streaming Netflix with no issues inflight wasn’t possible years ago, but some systems can now handle 50+ Mbps which is plenty of bandwidth to handle HD Video. It’s not always fast or economical so I’ll compare my WiFi experiences over the past 12 months amongst multiple airlines and aircraft around the world. It’s improved since my last WiFi comparison post in 2016. For a reference, typical download speeds of your cell phone while on 4G LTE is ~10Mbps. Let’s see which airline wins!

 

Alaska Airlines

Aircraft: B737-900
Provider: Gogo 2Ku
Download Speeds: 51 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 3.6 Mbps
Pricing: USD 19.00
Usage Limits: Unlimited

Alaska 2Ku 737-900

Alaska 2Ku 737-900


Asiana Airlines

Aircraft: A350-900
Provider: Panasonic
Download Speeds: 8.2 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 0.6 Mbps
Pricing: USD 21.95
Usage Limits: Unlimited

OZ A350

OZ A350


Cathay Pacific

Aircraft: B777-300ER
Provider: Gogo 2Ku
Download Speeds: 84 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 1.6 Mbps
Pricing: USD 19.95
Usage Limits: Unlimited

CX B777-300ER

CX B777-300ER


Delta Airlines

Aircraft: A319
Provider: Gogo 2Ku
Download Speeds: 10 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 1.6 Mbps
Pricing: USD 10.00
Usage Limits: Unlimited for 1 Hour (Stream Pass)


Etihad

Aircraft: A380
Provider: Panasonic
Download Speeds: 0.7 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 2.7 Mbps
Pricing: USD 15.95 (Complimentary Voucher in First Class)
Usage Limits: 150MB

Etihad A380

Etihad A380


Singapore Airlines

Aircraft: B777-300ER
Provider: Panasonic
Download Speeds: 0.58 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 0.35 Mbps
Pricing: USD 23.00 (Complimentary Voucher in First Class)
Usage Limits: 100MB

SQ B777-300ER

SQ B777-300ER


United Airlines

Aircraft: B737-900
Provider: Thales
Download Speeds: 2.8 Mbps
Upload Speeds: 0.34 Mbps
Pricing: USD 13.99
Usage Limits: Unlimited

UA 737-900 Thales

UA 737-900 Thales


 

Conclusion: The fastest download speeds were experienced on Cathay Pacific and Alaska Airlines which were both using the Gogo 2Ku satellite system. The fastest upload speeds were experienced on Alaska Airlines and Etihad. The following US Airlines are offering free inflight messaging: Alaska, Delta Air Lines & Southwest which is a nice perk without having to purchase the WiFi pass.

Overall Best Inflight WiFi Airline in 2019: Alaska Airlines

Overall Best Inflight WiFi Provider/System in 2019: Gogo 2Ku

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