Turning off mobile devices on flights may soon be a thing of the past
In a survey conducted by Skyscanner, 61 per cent of respondents said they would use their mobile devices during flights to make calls or send messages, if it were allowed. (Jim Lopes/shutterstock.com)
Published Wednesday, October 16, 2013 1:28PM EDT
Sixty-one percent of international air travellers would use their mobile phones on flights if they could, according to a survey carried out by Skyscanner.
Currently, a third of air passengers turn on their phones, smartphones or tablets as soon as the plane touches down on the tarmac, as current restrictions on in-flight cellular communications require that they be off or in sleep mode.
But the well-established habit of turning off your device during takeoff and landing could soon become a thing of the past. The US Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) is now working to loosen these restrictions, as it has concluded that mobile devices no longer present a security risk on planes.
A number of airlines already offer a WiFi connection on flights, which can currently only be used after takeoff and before landing. British Airways and American Airlines are among the carriers offering a WiFi connection to passengers for an additional fee, and Air France-KLM is currently running trials on a similar service before bringing it to all of its flights at the end of this year.
But according to the Skyscanner survey, 75 percent of respondents are not interested in paying extra for a WiFi connection, which is generally offered at between $15 and $30 per hour or per day.
For this study, Skyscanner surveyed 1000 international passengers in the first weeks of October 2013.