Outlets Still In Demand For Power Hungry Travelers
from the learn-to-share dept
Two years ago we posted a story from the NY Times about how, for all the increase in available WiFi, it was increasingly difficult to find power outlets. Apparently, the situation hasn’t improved any, because the NY Times is back again with a very similar article again discussing the severe shortage of power outlets, this time focusing on airports. The article notes that people don’t often complain about the situation, because they usually aren’t sure if they’re allowed to use the outlets (answer: you are, in most cases). However, the problem has continued to grow — usually noticeable by the crowd of laptop toters huddled around the few outlets available. The growth is caused by a combination of factors, from more people traveling with laptops to people spending more time at airports since many people arrive so early to deal with security hassles to the continued growth of WiFi. It appears most that airports are listening, and are trying to install more outlets, but it’s slow going. In the meantime, at the very end of the article there’s the suggestion that I follow: carry a splitter with you and offer to share the power. I’ve used it at a variety of airports and it works great. I can plug six additional laptops (or phone chargers) into a single outlet, and people are more than willing to let me plug the splitter into outlets. The only thing I’ve worried about is how people deal with it when I have to leave — but so far I’ve been lucky that most people plugged in are all leaving at about the same time. Of course, some airports are going in the other direction. Carlo is on the road this week and noticed that at Dallas-Fort Worth airport, they’re trying to charge travelers $2 for 30 minutes of power — though he notes that everyone else was crowded around free outlets about 10 yards away.