Free Wi-Fi Hotspots

by Justin Thomas •

Wi-Fi Zone ImageHotspots are places with publically accessible wireless internet access. Depending on where you are in the U.S., finding a free Hotspot can be tricky. Here is a overview of what’s available:

Panera Bread Company offers free Wi-Fi in about 500 of its stores nationwide. Here is a complete list of Wi-Fi enabled Paneras, you can also search for a ZIP code or City.

Wi-Fi UserOther cafes that have free Wi-Fi are Schlotzsky’s, The Atlanta Bread Company, Krystal Restaurants and Port City Java. Other cafes have free hotspots too, the best directory of these can be found at the Wi-Fi-FreeSpotâ„¢ Directory, where they are listed by state.

Many public libraries have free hotspots, the Wireless Librarian web has a list of these, however, the list is not comprehensive, and the Wi-Fi-FreeSpotâ„¢ Directory might be more useful for finding libraries.

Many hotels offer free Wi-Fi to guests, but few allow the public to connect for free. We did a survey of hotels in our area, and found that only Holiday Inn offers free access to non-guests. Here is a list of Holiday Inns, state-by-state. Two sites that list Wi-Fi Hotels are Geektools and Deals on Hotels.

Many airports are now hotspots. Some offer access in the entire airport while others may only have access in particular terminals or waiting areas. Also, many airline club lounges may have their own free access available. Here is a list of airport hotspots.

Where else can you find free hotspots? Apple Retail Stores are found in many locations. Some cities and neighbourhood groups have set up free hotspots in select locations, for example the National Mall in DC is Wi-Fi enabled. Some college campuses have networks that are publically accessible.

Camp Wireless lists campgrounds that are hotspots &#8212 these sites are generally only free to guests.

Comments 4

  1. As it happens, I’m sitting here in Heathrow’s Terminal 3, waiting for my connecting flight to Delhi, India. Wireless HotSpots are great! Finding power plugs for extended use and charging? Now THAT is a challenge.

    Aside: There’s a pair of plugs under cover plate on the floor, at the base of a pillar right behind the American Express “Bureau de Change”. Handy when you have 14(!) hours to kill between connecting flights.

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