Now surf the internet for free while you wait at the airport

Aug 11, 2014, 08:57 IST | Anuj Ismail

In a bid to upgrade the Pune airport to international standards, a WiFi network is being installed on the premises for the benefit of passengers

Walk into the waiting lounge at Pune International Airport at any point in the day, and chances are you’ll find hundreds of passengers sitting there, bent over their laptops and smart hones. So perhaps the airport authorities have chosen the perfect way to make the passengers feel right at home with the announcement that the airport will soon be WiFi-enabled.

According to airport officials, passengers spend an averageof 15 to 20 minutes waiting for their flights. Pic/Thinkstock
According to airport officials, passengers spend an averageof 15 to 20 minutes waiting for their flights. Pic/Thinkstock

Come September, nearly 10,000 travellers that pass through the airport each day can avail of the WiFi service within the airport premises, said airport director Manoj Gangal. “We are striving hard to provide the best-possible service to passengers who arrive at and depart from Pune Airport, so we have decided to install a WiFi network for their convenience as well,” Gangal told mid-day.

“The WiFi connection will be free for the first 30 minutes, after which passengers will have to pay for the service depending on their usage,” said Gangal, adding that, on an average, passengers spent between 20 and 30 minutes waiting for their flights, so several would benefit from the free first half hour.

Most Indian passengers currently use their own mobile data service or internet dongles to connect to the web while at the airport. The WiFi service will not only help them, but also passengers from abr-oad, who have to shell out big money for data use while roaming.

Passengers speak
Imran Ansari, a frequent traveller, said, “Due to business needs, I visit Pune airport twice a month. After check-in, I generally surf the internet. The new free WiFi service at Pune airport will be a boon for people like me.” Sagar Adhav, an IT professional said, “I am glad that the Pune airport is working towards being a truly international airport and providing more facilities to passengers.”

While Gangal is confident the network will be set up by the end of the month, there are still a few details to iron out. “We are still working out whether WiFi access should be provided on the basis of ticket numbers or the passengers’ names. We are trying to figure out a system which will allow our staff to benefit from the service as well,” said Gangal.

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