Airlines

Your Singapore Airlines inflight Wi-Fi and connectivity guide

Which aircraft have Wi-Fi, and how much does it cost?

If you’re 30,000 feet in the air, your ability to keep up with Facebook drama, cat videos and Patreon causes you (ahem) firmly believe in depends on whether your aircraft offers inflight connectivity.

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In the case of Singapore Airlines, that connectivity can come from Wi-Fi or Data Roaming. In this post, I’ll explain the different options and how much they cost.

Wi-Fi Connectivity

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Generic photo of woman using laptop in pantsuit in bed. As people are wont to do.

SQ uses two Wi-Fi providers, Panasonic and SITA OnAir. Here’s a breakdown of which aircraft has what (you can also see which aircraft offer what cabin products here):

Credit: SQTalker on SQTalk

Once upon a time, it was an important distinction whether your aircraft was Panasonic-equipped or OnAir-equipped. Why? Because Panasonic plans were time-based, and OnAir plans were volume-based. That’s to say, OnAir limited you to a certain amount of data, whereas you could surf to your heart’s content with Panasonic.

Here’s how Panasonic Wi-Fi plans used to price (all amounts in USD):

At some point this year, SQ stopped offering time-based plans for Panasonic and switched all plans to volume-based. Here’s how much Panasonic plans now cost:

  • 30MB (US$8)- US$0.27/MB
  • 60MB (US$15)- US$0.25/MB
  • 100MB (US$23)- US$0.23/MB
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The irony is that OnAir-equipped aircraft, once so feared by road warriors, now offer the better deal:

  • 30MB (US$4.99)- US$0.17/MB
  • 150MB (US$12.99)- US$0.09/MB
  • 500MB (US$19.99)- US$0.04/MB (this is a promotional rate)

There are actually two different OnAir platforms. The one shown above is on the newer aircraft eg the 5 new A380s with the 2017 cabin products. The older platform charges:

  • 15MB (US$6.99)- US$0.46/MB
  • 30MB (US$12.99)-US$0.43/MB
  • 50MB (US$19.99)- US$0.40/MB

Louis has done a rather unscientific testing of inflight Wi-Fi speeds which you can read about here.

Complimentary Wi-Fi for selected passengers

In February, Singapore Airlines announced that passengers in Suites, First and Business Class passengers and PPS Club members would receive a complimentary Wi-Fi session on Airbus A350, A380, Boeing 777-300ER and 787-10 aircraft.

  • Suites/ First Class Passengers: 100MB
  • Business Class Passengers/ PPS Club Members: 30MB

This allowance is granted per sector, so if you’re flying SIN-HKG-SFO, you’ll get one allowance on the SIN-HKG leg and another on the HKG-SFO leg. Allowances don’t stack, so a PPS Club member in First Class will get 100MB, not 100MB + 30MB.

Boingo access for Citi Prestige and World Elite Mastercard holders

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If you hold a Citi Prestige, you’ll have access to Boingo Wi-Fi which includes inflight access on selected airlines including Panasonic-equipped Singapore Airlines aircraft.

There are recent reports in the Telegram Group that Boingo accounts obtained through Citi Prestige have not been able to access Wi-Fi on SQ-operated flights. Do sound off if you’ve been on a flight recently.

Through Cell Service

In addition to Wi-Fi, you can also get data connectivity through your cellphone. Singapore Airlines aircraft with Wi-Fi will also have cell service provided through either OnAir or AeroMobile.

The good news is that Singtel, StarHub and M1 offer all-you-can-eat data plans with both providers

  • Singtel: S$29 for 24 hours
  • Starhub/M1: S$25 per day (resets at midnight, Singapore time)

In order to use this service, you need to turn on the data roaming feature on your phone.

Conclusion

It’s worth noting that the aircraft in SQ’s fleet without Wi-Fi are the ones which are being retired/returned to lessors anyway, and eventually we’ll be in a situation where all of SQ’s widebody fleet has connectivity.

The quality of your connection is highly dependent on weather conditions, location and assorted gremlins, but if your experience is so bad that you can’t use your allowance it’s well worth writing in to customer service because they’ve been known to do refunds in some instances.

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SITAONAIR: [email protected]
Panasonic:  [email protected]

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John
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John

Hi, I believe there’s something wrong with the table at the very beginning on the 777-300ER wifi provider. Its the other way round.

Would advise you not to rely on it.

Almerick
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Almerick

Does anyone know if M1 Data Passport covers Aircraft Satellite (OnAir/AeroMobile) data roaming? Or is it purely pay-per-use?

Melvin Sim
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Melvin Sim

Do the telcos’ plans go by sector also or are they for 24 hours, even going across flights?

Jeff
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Jeff

AMEX Boingo accounts no longer work inflight. I confirmed with Boingo directly that AMEX accounts are NOT eligible for inflight WIFI access.

But Elite Mastercard accounts (e.g. Citi Prestige) do. This is a published benefit, see here:
https://redeem.boingo.com/mcsi/standard-faqs/

Raymond Wee
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Raymond Wee

My experience has been that when Boingo is available on SQ flights, my AMEX issued one had never worked, and only Citi Prestige’s issued one worked, but only limited to 1 device at a time.

Jeff
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Jeff

Yup that would be consistent then. As per Boingo’s mail:

“Inflight Wi-Fi is not a benefit included with the complimentary service provided through American Express. Due to a recently discovered bug you may have received access on certain flights. Moving forward your American Express plan will include all the land based hotspots you’ve been enjoying but inflight Wi-Fi will no longer work.”

Ken
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Ken

“..There are recent reports in the Telegram Group that Boingo accounts obtained through Citi Prestige have not been able to access Wi-Fi on SQ-operated flights. Do sound off if you’ve been on a flight recently..”

I’ve been using Boingo via Citi Prestige.. connectivity has been.. well.. best described as being patchy.. but given that it’s free-of-charge, it’s hard to grumble about it.. I would certainly be less-okay with it if I was paying, but under the circumstances, and given it’s not business-critical for me, I’m okay with it.. works tho.. even if you need to ‘keep trying’ o get on..

Joel
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Joel

It worked for me on the A350 but not on the A380 …

invisible
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invisible

Any experience with iPass and/or Boing offered with HSBC Premier?

lifeonthego_k
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lifeonthego_k

Seems like Boingo is available to HSBC Premier MasterCard holders in Singapore – https://www.hsbc.com.sg/1/2//personal/cards/hsbc-premier-mastercard/

Kelvin
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Kelvin

I was on SIN-PVG-SIN J A380 last week. Outbound flight was able to connect via my iPhone6 and get the complimentary 30MB, but when the inbound flight was no luck to get the complimentary via the same iPhone6. Even reset the iphone6 does not help. At the end, I have to use my iPad to get the compliementary 30MB. Not sure if the same aircraft has locked down the MAC address of the phone and can’t let you re-login again after the 30MB has been fully consumed unless you purchase a price plan?

Ken
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Ken

I once flew A380 SIN>AKL w patchy connectivity, AKL>SIN w zero connectivity.. then A380 SIN>CDG w mostly ok connectivity.. A359 BCN>SIN also ok..

trackback

[…] The service provider for the Wi-Fi is SITAONAIR and you can have a read here of what Wi-Fi is available on which aircraft in the Singapore Airlines fleet.  […]

Ck
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Ck

Posting from on board sq632 on CP bolingo account

trackback

[…] Singapore Airlines no longer offers all-you-can-eat data plans anymore, even on Panasonic-equipped aircraft. Instead, you choose among 3 volume-based plans: 20MB for US$6, 80MB for US$16 or 200MB for […]

DK
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DK

Hi everyone, I just returned from a trip to Paris and London with my family and would like to share my experience with Boingo. I have Boingo through Citi Prestige and HSBC Premier Mastercard cards. I feel that most people will agree that internet access is essential in cities especially when you need it to find directions, call an uber etc. Boingo wifi is unreliable at best. Either you cannot find a source (can you imagine that I am struggling in big cities likes Paris and London which has thousands of hotspots) or the speed is totally unable to sustain… Read more »

Felix
Guest

Can’t seem to get boingo Wi-Fi to recognise the onboard Wi-Fi and connect to it. Only option left is to just use the 30MB provision on my biz class ticket. SQ 281 SIN-AKL

Victor
Guest
Victor

Citi Prestige Boingo working quite well throughout the flight.

Sent from SQ328 (A359)