Airfone Dramatically Drops Pricing as Special Outreach to its Airline Partners

GTE Airfone, a Verizon Communications subsidiary (NYSE:VZ), is temporarily discounting its air to ground phone service in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks by dramatically lowering its rates until Oct. 6.

"We appreciate the unique challenges the airlines are facing as a result of these terrorists, and we want to help our partners in any way we can," said Airfone President Bill Pallone.  "We hope these low rates provide an extra benefit to air travelers as more passengers begin to return to the sky."

The discount is already in effect, and per-minute calling rates for direct-dial domestic voice calls made from airlines using Airfone are now 99 cents.  The one-time initial charge for such calls also has dropped to 99 cents.

Airfone's domestic commercial airline partners include United, Continental, Delta, USAirways, American, Midwest Express and Air Wisconsin.

The new low rates began at Friday, Sept. 21 and will end at 11:59 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5.  In addition, there will be no charge for any domestic call that was placed on the Airfone system on Sept. 11.

GTE Airfone, a subsidiary of Verizon Communications, began offering commercial service in 1985, with the introduction of the first cordless air-to-ground telephone system.  The first seatback telephone was installed by Airfone in 1987, and the company deployed a nationwide, end-to-end digital system starting in 1993.  Currently, 62 percent of U.S.-based commercial passenger aircraft are installed with Airfone service.  Airfone's airline partners include:  Air Wisconsin Airlines; American Airlines; Continental Airlines; Delta Air Lines; Midwest Express Airlines; United Airlines; USAirways; AeroMexico; Air Canada; Air Nova; Bell Mobility; Mexicana Airlines; Air France, Alitalia; All Nippon Airways; British Airways; Cathay Pacific Airways; China Southern Airways; Crossair; Lufthansa; Thai Airways; Turkish Airlines; and Varig.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services.  Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 125 million access line equivalents and approximately 28 million wireless customers.  Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world.  A Fortune 10 company with about 260,000 employees and approximately $65 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific.  For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.