March 5, 2012, 12:05 PM

Amazon.com spreads its wings with Delta

The airline offers free in-flight shopping via another Wi-Fi offer with Gogo.

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Delta Air Lines passengers can now shop from Amazon.com Inc. during their flights. The airline today said that consumers with Internet-enabled devices can access and shop Amazon.com and AmazonWireless.com for free on planes outfitted with wireless Internet.

In-flight web access normally ranges from $4.95 to $12.95 per flight, depending on the length of the flight, according to Gogo, the company that provides Wi-Fi access on Delta planes. 

Delta has previously offered free online access to a number of e-commerce sites, including specialty retailer SkyMall.com, No. 185 in Internet Retailer’s Top 500 Guide, eBay.com and shoe e-retailer Zappos.com. Zappos is a unit of Amazon.com Inc., No. 1 in the Top 500 Guide.

The promotions involving eBay and Zappos ran for a limited amount of time, about a month each. Unlike those promotions, Delta says access to Amazon.com and AmazonWireless.com—a site Amazon is testing that lets consumers buy or upgrade their mobile phone contracts and phones with major mobile carriers—will be available on an ongoing basis. Delta and Amazon declined to reveal details on their arrangement.

An Amazon spokeswoman says the arrangement provides a convenient way for consumers to shop. "We love the convenience this offers customers who want to use their time in the air to get their shopping done, with delivery directly to their doorsteps or wherever their destination may be."

Delta says more than 800 of its aircraft, including some commuter planes, are now equipped with Wi-Fi. “Delta continues to offer new technology and innovation that delivers on our customer preferences while they travel with us,” says Bob Kupbens, Delta’s vice president of marketing and digital commerce. “Free access to Amazon provides a convenient way to shop online at 30,000 feet for things they want on the ground.”

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