Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) today announced that it has completed installation of Verizon Airfone JetConnect with Email to become the first airline to offer three of the most popular business applications, two-way e-mail, instant messaging and text messaging, on its fleet of 737, 757 and MD 80 aircraft.
For $15.98 per flight, Verizon Airfone JetConnect with Email allows passengers to send and receive an unlimited number of e-mail messages per flight. Data in excess of 5kB (kilobyte) per message and attachments incur a cost of ten cents per kB. (Prior to Oct. 1, 2003, the ten-cent per kB charge applies to e-mails over 2kB).
Continental also offers JetConnect for $5.99 per flight that provides passengers with instant access to laptop data services including instant and text messaging, weather updates, national, international and business news, sports and stock listings, and entertainment and destination information. JetConnect with Email includes all the features of JetConnect.
There are no hidden fees with these services. For e-mail messages larger than 5Kb, customers will receive a prompt message to accept the charge before opening the e-mail. No credit card charges will be applied without customer authorization.
“With installation now complete, our customers are able to stay connected and be more productive in the air on every domestic flight,” said Mark Bergsrud, vice president, marketing programs, Continental Airlines.
Continental was the first carrier to provide JetConnect service on board its aircraft, offering it to its customers since November 2002. The carrier began offering JetConnect with Email in July 2003.
“Continental saw how much travelers’ productivity was enhanced with JetConnect and the airline has embraced this opportunity to serve business professionals and frequent travelers,” said Bill Pallone, president of Verizon Airfone. “Passengers will be able to respond instantly to a text message or an email query from an office-based colleague.”
Customers access JetConnect by plugging their laptops into jacks on the Verizon Airfone handsets. No software downloads or changes to connection procedures are required. Customers just use their standard dial-up routine to link to JetConnect. JetConnect with Email is accessible via Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail, POP3, Microsoft Exchange via Outlook Web access and Lotus Notes via POP. To log onto the service, customers need to provide a username and password. Customers using POP3 will also need their mail server address. Inflight e-mail is enabled by software provided by Seattle-based Tenzing Communications.
About Continental Airlines -
Continental Airlines is the world`s seventh-largest airline and has more than 2,300 daily departures. With 134 domestic and 92 international destinations, Continental has the broadest global route network of any U.S. airline, including extensive service throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. Continental has hubs serving New York, Houston, Cleveland and Guam, and carries approximately 41 million passengers per year on the newest jet fleet among major U.S. airlines. With 48,000 employees, Continental is one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America. In 2003, Fortune ranked Continental highest among major U.S. carriers in the quality of its service and products, and No. 2 on its list of Most Admired Global Airlines. For more company information, visit continental.com.
About Verizon Airfone -
Verizon Airfone, a subsidiary of Verizon Communications, began offering commercial service in 1984 with the introduction of the first cordless air-to-ground telephone system. Airfone installed the first seatback telephone in 1987, and the company deployed a nationwide, end-to-end digital system starting in 1993. Verizon Airfone introduced JetConnectSM - the inflight Email, instant messaging and text messaging service in 2002.