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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Google's Offering Up Free WiFi At Dozens Of Backward U.S. Airports

When I travel outside the U.S., airports seem to all have free WiFi. And they have it at Oakland and in Jacksonville, though it doesn't usually work in the latter. But most U.S. airports seem old-fashioned and predatory when it comes to WiFi. Well Google's about to fix that... at least for the Holiday season (November 10 through January 15). And they're doing it in over 40 airports.

My own local airport, Burbank, is one of the lucky ones and, in fact, they announced that they'll continue Google's generosity indefinately. So will Seattle.

These are the airports getting the free WiFi:

• Austin (AUS)
• Baltimore (BWI)
• Billings (BIL)
• Boston (BOS)
• Bozeman (BZN)
• Buffalo (BUF)
• Burbank (BUR)
• Central Wisconsin (CWA)
• Charlotte (CLT)
• Des Moines (DSM)
• El Paso (ELP)
• Fort Lauderdale (FLL)
• Fort Myers/SW (RSW)
• Greensboro (GSO)
• Houston (HOU)
• Houston Bush (IAH)
• Indianapolis (IND)
• Jacksonville (JIA)
• Kalamazoo (AZO)
• Las Vegas (LAS)
• Louisville (SDF)
• Madison (MSN)
• Memphis (MEM)
• Miami (MIA)
• Milwaukee (MKE)
• Monterey (MRY)
• Nashville (BNA)
• Newport News (PHF)
• Norfolk (ORF)
• Oklahoma City (OKC)
• Omaha (OMA)
• Orlando (MCO)
• Panama City (PFN)
• Pittsburgh (PIT)
• Portland (PWM)
• Sacramento (SMF)
• San Antonio (SAT)
• San Diego (SAN)
• San Jose (SJC)
• Seattle (SEA)
• South Bend (SBN)
• Spokane (GEG)
• St. Louis (STL)
• State College (SCE)
• Toledo (TOL)
• Traverse City (TVC)
• West Palm Beach (PBI)

No New York City, no L.A., no San Francisco, no Chicago and no Washington, DC... but who uses them anyway? Meanwhile though, Google has also worked out free WiFi for its entire hometown, Mountain View, California and "last month it partnered with Virgin America to give the airline's customers free access to Gogo's Inflight Internet" (also ending January 15).

While Google's move to offer free wireless in airports is an original twist, several companies are already running similar sponsorship campaigns on domestic flights.

E-commerce giant eBay said it will provide free WiFi through Gogo on more than 250 domestic Delta Airline flights during the busiest travel week of the year, over the Thanksgiving holiday. From Nov. 24-30, flyers who log in will be taken to eBay's holiday-themed homepage and invited to "complete your holiday shopping while still en-route to your Thanksgiving destination."

Car maker Lexus wrapped up one week of complimentary Internet on American Airlines flights on Friday. The promotion coincided with the introduction of the 2010 Lexus LS line.

We're happy to take what we can get from our benificent corporate masters.


workhard said...

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Unknown said...

ke your blog, I really do, but what, oGod, is the point of a travel blog where I can't search for specific countries?

DownWithTyranny said...

Igor, the search bar is that white horizontal space on the upper left side of the page.