By Tomasz Magdanski
Summer is the most important time of year. My son comes to visit me in California. But I have to pick him up in London and drop him back off, which makes for a 48-hour trip.
Like most people, even when I’m out of the office, I can’t afford to be offline. I have to be connected, but since I barely spend any time in London, buying a roaming mobile data plan is definitely not worth the expense.
Before I came to iPass, I had to worry about how I would stay connected even when travelling. Luckily, I don’t have to worry about that anymore. Here’s how easy iPass made my trip.
On day one, my wife dropped my son and me off at SFO, for our overnight flight to Heathrow. Even before I unlocked my phone, I was already connected to #SFO FREE WIFI. And the Wi-Fi worked just as well as it does at home, keeping my son entertained after we exhausted “I spy with my little eye.”
When we boarded, I was able to connect to inflight Wi-Fi, which switched on when we reached 10,000 feet. I was online on my laptop in a matter of seconds, so I could do what I usually do on flights: work. It was just as quick getting connected on my smartphone, which my son used to play his crafty, 6-year old boy games.
After landing, I realized that not only was international roaming disabled, but calling was also blocked. No problem. I connected to _Heathrow Wi-Fi and ordered an Uber to take us home.
After I dropped my son off, during which there were a few, difficult separation moments, I took Uber back to the hotel.
When I approached the receptionist, my phone vibrated. It was already online, having automatically connected to the hotel’s paid Wi-Fi.
However, the receptionist didn’t know this. She asked if I wanted to buy Wi-Fi along with my reservation. My response, “Thank you, but I am already online.” She tried to convince me that I couldn’t be online without paying for a daily pass to their network. Nice try.
In my room, I was able to FaceTime my wife and father, before dozing off while streaming Mr. Robot, one of my favorite shows.
The next morning, I used Wi-Fi again to get an Uber, to make my way to the airport. I worked a bit more at the airport with coffee and breakfast.
Then came boarding, fasten your seatbelt, take off, 10,000 feet, and Wi-Fi. After a good night’s rest, I was eager to take Virgin’s inflight Wi-Fi service for a spin.
It was great. I was able to chat with my wife, and I even sent her some beautiful photos I’d taken of mountains in Greenland.
When I finally got home, it hit me, thanks to iPass, I could survive a trip to Europe and back just using global Wi-Fi, all at no additional cost, while connecting to premium hotel Wi-Fi and using all the inflight bandwidth I wanted.
My trip only lasted two days, but even in that short period of time, I realized how much global Wi-Fi access matters. Not only was I able to stay connected to the people I love, but I was also able to keep up with stuff happening at work and use the basic services I needed, like transportation.