12. 31. 2008
Stay connected while you travel: finding power sources & wifi in the airport
If you're like me and bring your laptop with you when you travel, you've probably spent a lot of time hunting through the terminals for power sources and wi-fi service.
Here are a couple of sites to visit before - or during- your next trip. Hint: with airline delays at ridiculous levels, and with holiday and weather delays an almost certainty, you should check them out even if you think your layovers will be short short. You may spend more time in the airport than your ticket indicates.
The first site, atlarge.com, offers ratings and discussion of the essentials at airports around the world: internet and cell service and power points. It allows users to rate the location based on comfort (how comfy it is, but also how safe you feel in the area and what other services are nearby) and value per cost of the services offered. It looks like most people offer information about the various wifi services, the connection reliability, and cost. For example, atlarge users have pointed out one of my favorite things - free wifi in the JetBlue terminal at New York's JFK airport.
As of this writing, there isn't a lot of discussion about where to plug in, but that's where the second site comes in: a wiki site called the airpower wiki. This site works like any other wiki, so you can read, add, or update the information about a given airport's power sources, or add a new airport to the list. This site is a little easier to navigate quickly - which is important if you're on a smartphone or need to find the power source before your laptop battery runs out - and I like that you can scratch out incorrect information.
Finally, check out flyertalk.com for every type of info you might need about travel in general. You won't find what you're looking for when on the run, but it's a great resource to check out before you hit the road...er, terminal.
I'm still looking for a really good wiki site on places to sleep in various airports (I've been stranded more times than I care to count), but in the meantime, at least I'll know where to park myself and surf the hours away while I wait for my next flight.