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How Has Rail WiFi Technology Developed?

Recent research found that the average commuting time in the UK has risen from 48 minutes to an hour and that one in seven commuters are now spending two or more hours of their day travelling to and from work. As commuting time continues to increase, passengers are likely to become more dissatisfied - unless transport providers, such as train operating groups, are able to provide free WiFi.


Long train and bus journeys are an ideal time to perform WiFi-reliant activities, such as browsing the web, checking social media, sending a few emails and using music and video streaming services. Not only does access to WiFi help passengers (whether they’re travelling for business or pleasure) stay entertained and productive, but it also helps to make their journey pass by quicker. 


By improving the passenger experience, you can boost their satisfaction, which can entice people to return and travel with your services again.


But it wasn’t always like this. In the past, if passengers needed access to WiFi, they had to pay for it. This connection was typically unreliable and only lasted for a limited period of time. The alternative option was to use mobile data, which was also unreliable, due to signal black spots. 


Thankfully, the introduction of free WiFi on UK trains in 2017 allowed WiFi-reliant passengers to breathe a great sigh of relief. This decision, among other rail innovations, has revolutionised travel and it’s now become an expectation for passengers. 


However, it’s crucial you choose the right WiFi provider. The right provider can offer your passengers a continuously connected journey, which comes with a whole host of benefits, including:


  • A reliable connection which allows your passengers’ devices to remain connected at every stage of their journey. No matter how many changes they may have to make.
  • Single sign-up (SSU) - your passengers only need to sign in once and they never need to again. The WiFi will automatically recognise their device.
  • Personalised offers and promotions - if they sign up to receive marketing alerts, your passengers receive offers and promotions that may be of interest to them.
  • Integrated loyalty schemes - there’s no need to open multiple web pages and apps at once. Your passengers can access their travel-related loyalty schemes from a single portal.
  • A single branded experience - your passengers will be sent to a bespoke branded splash page once they sign into the WiFi. This means your brand will remain at the front of your passengers’ minds.
  • Insightful data for you - you’ll receive in-depth analytics into your passengers’ behaviours and preferences. From popular travel routes to footfall and demographics, you can use this data to improve your offerings and further enhance the passenger experience.


For a closer look at how the continuously connected passenger journey (UK Patent 2556060) works, take a look at our infographic below. 




Find Out More About How a Free WiFi Service Can Benefit Your Passengers 


The data in our infographic reveals just a glimpse of the impact transport WiFi can have for your passengers. The benefits for both passengers and TOGs run much deeper.


Luckily, we’ve put together a helpful guide that’s full of information about continuously connected passenger journeys. From the benefits of offering account-based validation to how WiFi can benefit your brand, marketing schemes and more, download a free copy of the guide today.


Continuously Connected Passenger Journeys CTA WiFi SPARK

Rebecca Duffin

Rebecca Duffin

Rebecca Duffin

Rebecca is a creative, design-lead marketer with endless enthusiasm. She has worked for WiFi SPARK since 2012 and has an in-depth understanding of all elements of the business. She is responsible for lead generation, brand engagement and ensuring the company is the 'Go-To Provider' for more than just WiFi. Her specialities include general marketing, promotion, social media management, tender management & bid writing, copywriting, creative design, brand enforcement and exhibition management. Becky heads up the department for Rail and Healthcare - two of the company's three key sectors.