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Airlines add perks to attract business travelers

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To catch the attention of corporate trekkers, airlines are offering bed-like seats, faster Internet access and more legroom.

Lie-flat seats have become popular for first-class passengers who desire quality sleep. United already offers flat-bed seats in the premium cabins of nearly 150 jets and plans to add them to more than 30 planes by early 2013. Delta will place similar seats in more than half of its international fleet by the end of this year. US Airway’s fleet of A330 trans-Atlantic jets are already equipped with lie-flat seats.

Numerous airlines are also vying for the best Wi-Fi in flight connections, including Virgin America. The airline not only first offered Wi-Fi throughout its fleet, but also plans to install a connection that is four times faster by early August.

Virgin America has another recent program aimed at smaller businesses. Companies that spend at least $20,000 with the airline during a given period get 3 percent of that amount to use as credit for future flights.

For corporate fliers who fly coach, airlines have developed seats with a little extra legroom, without the first-class price tag. For example, United calls these seats “economy plus,” while Delta’s version is “economy comfort.” American additionally has plans to allow passengers to purchase four to six more inches of legroom, as well as the option to board before others in coach.

For more information, read the USA Today article.