Airlines sign up for in-flight mobiles

Hotel News - 20/09/2005

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Travellers who cannot bear to be separated from their mobile phones when they are flying might soon be able to use them in the air.

TAP Air Portugal and bmi have signed up with a Swiss technology firm, OnAir, to use their voice and text service for mobile phones.

The system works because it requires a lower transmission power source than normal mobile networks, which does not interfere with the plane's electronic equipment.

When making travel arrangements such as reserving flights, airport hotel rooms and airport parking spaces, it is worthwhile to remember that these tasks can all be performed online, which can sometimes be cheaper and more efficient than booking through an agent or on the phone.

The OnAir system will now be trialled before release in 2007 and the news will be particularly welcome to travelling executives who often like to work as they commute.

Executives using airport hotel accommodation frequently should bear in mind that many airport hotels around the UK such as the Hilton and Marriott chain offer generous rewards scheme for regular visits.

George Cooper, chief executive at OnAir, told the Associated Press: 'During that three months, we'll all be evaluating how it's going, what the usage is, how we handle the crew issues and so on.'

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