Average of £16.30 spend per trip, says Amba HotelsAmba Hotels, a group that provides free Wi-Fi to guests, has released today the findings of research into Wi-Fi charges in the UK. It says that business travellers in Britain are spending more than £370m a year in order to stay connected in hotels and at airports. It works out at an average of £16.30 on Wi-Fi and roaming charges per trip. This, it goes on, is a third more than the average in the USA, where free Wi-Fi is more readily available.
Some hotels and airports charge up to £17 for 24 hours. Furthermore, Amba’s research indicates that in up to 70% of cases, travellers cannot work efficiently as a result of slow or unreliable Wi-Fi connections.
For example, 20% have been unable to join a work call or video-conferencing meeting, another 20% have been late for an important conference or video call, and 10% have felt the impact on their personal lives after being unable to contact friends and family.
Financial commentator and founder of letssavemoney.com, Sarah Willingham, says: ‘Fast, free, reliable Wi-Fi is non-negotiable for modern business travellers. With airlines and rail companies investing in Wi-Fi on board and international roaming charges falling dramatically, it’s inexcusable to keep charging extortionate rates for patchy Wi-Fi connections. I’m pleased to see Amba Hotels is championing fast, free Wi-Fi and hope their competitors follow their lead.’
Mike DeNoma, CEO of glh, the parent company of Amba Hotels, says: ‘Wi-Fi is consistently one of the key criteria that influences our guests’ choice of hotel – in fact, for some people, it’s more important than a good night’s sleep! Our Wi-Fi has no caveats, no loyalty schemes, no limit on uploading or downloading. It’s the fastest, free, unlimited Wi-Fi at any meeting & events hotel.’
The research highlights the overall cost of Wi-Fi to businesses in other key business travel markets as follows: France – €232m Euros annually at €22.10 per trip; Germany – €3.6bn annually at €21.10 per trip; US – $7.3bn annually at $15.10 per trip.