You know that epic feeling when your flight ends and you finally get to your destination? Now imagine taking those first steps off the plane, syncing your phone, and getting a $1200 bill for airplane internet use. That's what happened to me on Singapore Airlines today.
I had an otherwise enjoyable flight, but the sticker shock of being gouged $1200 made me feel like I was deplaning from Total Bastard Airlines, that old skit from SNL where they kick you off the plane with a "Buy BYE!"
So what does it take to rack up $1200 of internet use? In my case, just 155 page views, mostly to my email. I know this because for the first time I counted up my page views to see where all the dollars went. I wish I could blame an addiction to NetFlix or some intellectual documentary that made me $1200 smarter. However, the Singapore Airlines internet was painfully slow, so videos would be impossible and that means I didn’t get any smarter… except about how to charge a lot of money for stuff. I did learn that.
At one point, I spent about an hour uploading one 4mb powerpoint doc. That doc probably cost me $100 to upload, so I hope my team liked it. I actually even emailed them a warning that my upload was taking a while. That email probably cost me $10. And yes, the pricing per mb was disclosed on sign-up, but I bought the $30 package, slept through most the flight, and really didn't think I'd end up a thousand bucks past the limit.
I can think of a lot of other things I'd rather spend $1200 on, like a flight… to Singapore! But alas, I've already done that and the flight ended up costing WAY more than expected. ;)
P.S. Shouts out to the Shangri La who welcomed me to my hotel with a note explaining that the internet HERE, is always free. Meanwhile, no replies from Singapore Airlines. Tweet ‘em this story if you want them to stop gouging internet users: @singaporeair