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Wi-Fight for Free Wi-Fi? Airport Parking and Hotels (APH) Highlights Wi-Fi costs at UK Airports

With travellers rating their smart phones and tablets as travel necessities, Airport Parking and Hotels (APH) is helping tech savvy people to stay online by comparing the Wi-Fi access available at UK airports. The research compares the availability and cost of accessing Wi-Fi across 25 major UK airports and is available in the Know Before You Go section of the website at www.aph.com/airportwifi.

Of the 25 airports surveyed, 15 were found to offer free Wi-Fi available in the terminal areas, including Aberdeen, Edinburgh, London City and Stansted. Of these 15 airports, some allocated a limited amount of time to passengers with 10 airports allowing up to 30 minutes’ access.

All the remaining airports included in the research, including Belfast, Exeter and London Heathrow, offer Wi-Fi to passengers at a cost except Blackpool Airport, which does not offer Wi-Fi access in the terminal. Instead, passengers must book access to the Executive Airport Lounge for internet access, at a cost of £16 per person.

Hotspots offering Wi-Fi at a fixed tariff are available at several of the airports. These include BT Wi-Fi at Belfast and Exeter; Boingo at Heathrow and Gatwick, Arqiva (formerly Spectrum Interactive) at Cardiff, Leeds and Luton, and The Cloud at Durham, Liverpool and Doncaster Sheffield Airports.

In terms of cost, Arqiva at Cardiff, Leeds and Luton was found to charge the highest hourly rate for Wi-Fi at £5 per hour, whereas both BT and Boingo offer 24 hours unlimited access for just under £10.

Additionally, travellers should be aware that Newcastle Airport, which offers free Wi-Fi for up to 30 minutes, stipulates that this is only available “at certain catering outlets on purchase” including Starbucks, Condecco Bar, Eagle Bar Diner, Wine and Deli, and Caffe Ritazza. Furthermore, some travellers have noticed that although Gatwick only offers 15 minutes free Wi-Fi through Boingo, unlimited free Wi-Fi is available for customers at McDonalds in the South Terminal.

Airport Parking and Hotels (APH) is the UK’s award winning long stay airport parking operator and booking agency, after winning the Best Airport Parking Company for a third year running at British Travel Awards 2012. This year APH also celebrates its 33rd year as a retailer and operator of pre-booked airport parking and travel extras. APH offers parking at all major UK airports as well as airport hotels packaged with parking and airport lounges. APH is also a carbon balanced company and has, through support of the World Land Trust, helped purchase more than 1,000 acres of endangered rainforest.

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