AIR TRAVEL

Unlimited free WiFi to be made available at all Spanish airports

State agency AENA to award contract in October with service to begin two months after

A passenger looks at her cellphone at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport on Thursday.
A passenger looks at her cellphone at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport on Thursday.Jaime Villanueva

Unlimited free WiFi will soon be available at all 46 airports and two helicopter ports run by Spain’s AENA national airport authority, officials said in a statement on Thursday.

AENA said it would also quadruple the speed of the current internet service offered to passengers.

The agency will open a bidding process to contract a company by October, and the free WiFi service should be available two months after the two-year tender is awarded.

The free connection service is expected to be combined with a paid-for premium service

The free connection service is expected to be combined with a paid-for premium service, which already exists for customers who “want higher speeds and improved additional benefits.”

Many Spanish airports, such as Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas International Airport and Barcelona’s El Prat, currently offer 30 minutes of basic free WiFi at their terminals under a contract with Kubi Wireless.

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Kubi Wireless won the AENA bid to provide WiFi to travelers at 28 airports in April 2013. It initially allowed 15 minutes of free service but has since increased it to 30 minutes.

In its statement, AENA explained that the free WiFi was a further step in its bid to bring more digital services to travelers, such as those offered through its smartphone application, which allows passengers to check boarding gates and flight times, reserve airport parking spaces and seats in VIP lounge areas, and look for information about airport services.

Earlier this month, the government announced that it would provide free WiFi at Cercanías commuter train stations from June.

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