U.S. Markets closed

MileHi App Wants to Make the Friendly Skies Even Friendlier

Daniel Howley
Technology Editor
Yahoo Tech

MileHi, a new social media app for travelers, wants to bring you a bit closer with your fellow airline passengers. Exactly how close, though, is up to you. Technically designed for keeping connected with colleagues on a long flight, the app also seems designed for those looking to engage in some in-flight docking maneuvers.

Heck, there’s even a warning in the App Store that you have to be at least 17 years or older to download the app due to “Frequent/Intense/ Mature/Suggestive Themes.”

So you can imagine there will be plenty of people sending messages like, “Buckle up, baby, it’s going to be a bumpy flight,” “You are now free to walk about my cabin,” or anything else a 16-year old would think a member of the opposite sex would actually want to hear.

It’s not all about meeting people who want to put their seats in the upright position, though. MileHi’s founder, Richard Lloyd, told Business Traveller that the app is great for business people seeking to meet up with fellow flyers attending the same conference, or other work-related events.

The app offers polls to see if people on your flight are traveling for business or for pleasure, and has profile pages for users including their name, occupation, and marital status.

It can also be used to simply chat and socialize with some nice people you happen to be flying with. Once you meet people in the app, you can chat with them on the app via either group or private messages.

Flight delayed

The odds of an app like MileHi taking off, though, aren’t great. For one thing, once you’re in the air, it will only work over Wi-Fi. A recent survey by Routehappy found that roughly 66 percent of U.S. flights offer “some chance” of finding Wi-Fi. And according to Yahoo Travel, only 6 percent of travelers actually use in-flight Wi-Fi when it’s available.

Other passengers would also need to be using MileHi on their phones — greatly decreasing the chance of a random encounter. The truth is that most fliers aren’t looking to chat on a plane. 

When we’re cramped in an aluminum tube, hurtling through the air thousands of feet above the ground and breathing recycled air, many of us would rather pass out from partaking of the inflight alcohol selection than start a chat session with a stranger.

All of that is to say that unless a massive number of people start using the MileHi app, you’re not very likely to meet someone to chat with using this app. 

MileHi is available for download on both iPhone and Android, and will surely be the F.A.A.’s new favorite app.

Email Daniel at dhowley@yahoo-inc.com; follow him on Twitter at @DanielHowley or on Google+.