Hotels and airlines are rushing to meet the needs of Net-savvy business travellers through a wide range of Internet access initiatives.

Thistle Hotels is attempting to meet the Web demands of guests by introducing broadband Internet access to over 81 percent of its UK rooms.

The service called Worldroom Connect will offer a 10Mbps connection. The system will be rolled out over the next year. Ian Burke, chief executive of Thistle, said: “The availability of fast and convenient Internet access has become a key factor in hotel choice for many travelling executives.”

The increasing need for IT support for travelling business people has led toHotel chain, Hyatt International’s introduction of a team of “technology concierges”. They are responsible for providing advice and help to guestsexperiencing a range of IT problems.

However it is not only the hotels that are attempting to wire up businesstravellers. Boeing has announced that the Internet and email will be available on its planes next year.

The aircraft manufacturer has adopted Connexion, a technique that uses satellites to maintain the connection to the Internet. The system has previously been used on oilrigs and military aircraft.

If you want to check your mail before take off though, Delta Airlines are to offer travellers wireless Internet access from its business lounge and up to the point of boarding. Passengers will need a notebook with a wireless Lan card to take advantage of the system.