Viasat 2023 passenger survey

Viasat has announced the findings of the 2023 Passenger Experience Survey which surveyed more than 11,000 global air travellers.

The company says that, as passenger numbers reach near-record levels and with global travel definitely back on the cultural agenda, the survey’s findings show passenger expectations are starting to also increase.

According to Viasat, 83% of surveyed people reported they are more likely to rebook a flight with an airline that offered quality Wi-Fi. In addition, 81% said Wi-Fi was important to their onboard experience, which Viasat says is an increase of 4% since last year.

Jimmy Dodd, SVP & President of Global Enterprise & Mobility at Viasat commented on the survey results: “These findings give us a fascinating insight into the minds of passengers at a critical time for the aviation sector.

“It is encouraging to see passenger numbers close to pre-COVID levels; and the 2023 Passenger Experience Survey shows how quickly travellers have adopted to digital nativism, including expectations for free, fast Wi-Fi and edge-of-your-seat experiences, like Live TV and Live Sport at 30,000 feet.”

Regarding Wi-Fi charges on board flights, half of the respondents commented that they are less likely to connect to in-flight Wi-Fi if they had to pay. Also, 29% are willing to pay more for their ticket to benefit from free Wi-Fi.

Viasat says that other than ticket price, free in-flight Wi-Fi has become the most influential factor for passengers when choosing a carrier, ahead of free food and drink, legroom and free entertainment.

The survey also found that, in the US, demand for free in-flight Wi-Fi has increased by 50% since 2022, with India seeing a 42% increase and Brazil 35%. 82% passengers said Wi-Fi should be free on all long-haul flights and 47% want unlimited social media access, while 1 in 5 want to game (22%).

In addition, 4 in 5 passengers said they would pay for access to live sport during a flight with the FIFA World Cup in most demand (45%), followed by the Olympics (28%) and the NBA (25%).

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