Internet Center Expands at Los Angeles Airport

An Internet and business center at LAX, where visitors can access the Web, send e-mail, play computer games, watch satellite TV and also obtain office supplies, is expanding to new terminals.

Dubbed the Gate Escape, the center opened with 29 stations earlier this summer at Terminal 8, where United Airlines operates. The Culver City-based company plans to install 20 more stations at Terminal 7 and another center at the Tom Bradley International Terminal next month, said Charles P. Meister, president and CEO.

About 100 to 150 people per day use the Terminal 8 center, spending an average of 21 minutes online, Meister said. Users pay $5 for the first 15 minutes; a full hour costs $18. About 40% are leisure or personal, as opposed to business, travelers, he added. Tel. (866) 843-4283, http://www.thegateescape.com.

Twelve other Internet stations, which another Los Angeles-area company, Neptune Networks, began installing in boarding areas in November, continue to operate at the Tom Bradley terminal and Terminal 3. Initially free, the service now costs 25 cents per minute, with a $2.50 minimum. The company plans to install 50 stations at San Jose International Airport in October, a spokesman said.

Compiled by Jane Engle

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