February 07, 2014
Credit: ROCKWELL COLLINS
WestJet, fresh off a year of record profits, is close to unveiling new inflight entertainment (IFE) and Wi-Fi connectivity plans and expects to begin rolling out the services by year’s end.
President and CEO Gregg Saretsky says the carrier “will be in a position to make an announcement” by the end of February, after WestJet employees preview the carrier’s IFE choice. “There is a lot of detail we want to work together with our team on before we go public on that announcement,” he told analysts on a Feb. 4 earnings call.
Meanwhile, the carrier is planning a “measured” rollout of its Wi-Fi offering starting sometime in the second half of the year, says EVP Sales & Marketing Bob Cummings, suggesting a multi-tiered approach that will include at least some period of free connectivity. “When we do announce [Wi-Fi], we’ll go through the business model with respect to what’s paid and what’s free and what that looks like,” he adds.
WestJet currently offers live TV within Canada and tablet rentals on some longer flights. It does not offer Wi-Fi.