More than eight in 10 passengers (83 per cent) feel confident flying again, a significant rise from just one in ten (10 per cent) this time last year, according to Inmarsat’s latest passenger experience survey.

The poll consulted more than 11,000 people worldwide who have travelled by air in the past 12 months.

Despite ongoing travel challenges, confidence in air travel has returned in full force, the survey found.

Regional differences

This is true across the globe, with Brazil and Saudi Arabia (90 per cent) the most confident, the UK close to average (81 per cent), and South Korea (53 per cent) the least.

More than three quarters (77 per cent) said that inflight Wi-Fi is important to them when they travel – up from just 55 per cent in the first survey in 2018.

This growth was most pronounced in the Middle East, as 94 per cent and 92 per cent of passengers from Saudi Arabia and the UAE, respectively, say Wi-Fi is important in the air.

Inflight connectivity

This offers a major opportunity for airlines, Inmarsat said, as 82 per cent of passengers globally said they would rebook with an airline that offered quality inflight Wi-Fi, with 92 per cent of business travellers agreeing.

Just 67 per cent agreed before the pandemic, demonstrating how much more important inflight Wi-Fi has become.

Niels Steenstrup, president of Inmarsat Aviation, told FINN: “What’s been interesting is just how much has changed with the sentiment towards travel and the sentiments towards connectivity from pre COVID through to today. We were wowed by that change.

“People were afraid or concerned about travelling before when there were lots of restrictions, it was complicated – all the paperwork travelling in and out of countries and so on. And now that that is gone, the confidence has gone way up.”

Uncertain world

Commenting on the increasing desire for inflight connectivity, he added: “With the conflict in Ukraine and other things going on in the world, when people feel uncertain, they also want to feel connected.

“So this desire to be connected when on the move is just continuing to increase and it doesn’t matter whether you’re in an Uber or a taxi or on a plane, you really want to be connected.”
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