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Here's how to get free Wi-Fi anywhere

Wi-Fi has pretty much become a basic human right. When a friend doesn't have a Wi-Fi connection at his house we tend to visit less, when our Wi-Fi drops at home we're outraged, and we certainly wouldn't stop for a coffee at a cafe that doesn't have Wi-Fi. But you know what's even better than Wi-Fi? Free Wi-Fi. Here's how to get free Wi-Fi wherever you go.

Ask a friendly stranger

The number of times I've had a friendly stranger simply give me a Wi-Fi password, whether they're using Wi-Fi at a cafe or they work at one, is incredible. Considering many places like you to pay for Wi-Fi, people seem to be pretty free-and-easy with the passwords. Other times they're written on a chalkboard or on a piece of paper at the till, so use your eyes, put on a big smile and charm your way to free Wi-Fi.

AndroidPIT smile Daria smartphone
"Say cheese! Now, if only I had Wi-Fi to email you the picture..." / © ANDROIDPIT

Pool resources with WeFi

WeFi is a great app that automatically connects you to any free Wi-Fi in your area, based on the combined resources of millions of users just like you, who know that where there's numbers, there's strength. With over seven million downloads and hundreds of millions of hotspots, WeFi is sure to have coverage right where you are.

WeFi Pro - Automatic Wi-Fi Install on Google Play

Use your scanner

Your Android will already tell you if a Wi-Fi connection is secured or not. And thankfully not everyone is as savvy about protecting their internet connection as you are about borrowing it. Just go to Settings > Wi-Fi and look for connections that are labeled 'open' or 'unsecured' and connect.

AndroidPIT Galaxy Note 4 TouchWiz Wi Fi network connections
Even the Android system wants you to have access to free Wi-Fi. / © ANDROIDPIT

Go to Starbucks or McDonalds

It doesn't take a genius to know that certain major chains use free Wi-Fi as a carrot to entice customers in. Just as the free restrooms at McDonalds cause plenty of people to swing by in times of need and stick around for some fries, so too does free Wi-Fi. It almost makes up for paying six bucks for a Starbucks coffee.

Join a community

Instabridge is a great little app where crowd-sourced Wi-Fi connections and passwords are compiled into a network of millions. The best thing is that it also includes secured connections, so as long as one person paid for that overpriced latte, everyone with the app can enjoy the connection.

instabridge screenshots
Instabridge is a coordinated network of free Wi-Fi lovers. / © ANDROIDPIT
Instabridge - Free WiFi Install on Google Play

Pay attention at the mall

Every time I head to an Android event I invariably have SIM cards, data plans and calling cards thrust into my palm. Often, one of those many freebies is a Wi-Fi card that allows you an hour or two of free Wi-Fi access to a big mobile or internet provider. The same things are regularly handed out as promotional items at malls and shopping centres, so keep your eyes peeled.

Swing by a hotel

This one feels a little cheeky, but the front desk staff at many hotels have no idea whether you are staying at their establishment or not, so if you casually stroll up and ask for the Wi-Fi passwords, more often than not they will happily hand you a slip of paper and you're on your way. Just cross your fingers that they don't ask for your room card.

hotel apps teaser
Hotels and tourist spots always have free Wi-Fi. / © ANDROIDPIT

Spoof your MAC address

Because timed free Wi-Fi connections are simply based on the MAC address of your device, it's not terribly difficult to spoof that address and score some more free minutes. This one is a little more involved than some others, but if you know how to do it it's a great technique to have in your free Wi-Fi toolkit.

Hit the library

If you live near a library or take your lunch near one, you can always pick up free Wi-Fi for a limited time at the good old book depository. Again, you may need to stroll in and grab a slip of paper, but sometimes the Wi-Fi password is written up on the wall for all to see and use.

books 1 teaser AndroidPIT
Libraries not only have free Wi-Fi, you can also learn something there. / © ANDROIDPIT

Use your friends

Even if you're too cheap to pay for a bigger data plan, your friends might not be. You can often tether your phone to a friend's device for long enough to check your WhatsApp or send an email. Just don't go watching Vines for half an hour or you might find yourself with one less friend in the world.

Check your cable subscription

Some of the big cable networks also provide Wi-Fi access a freebie in their subscription deals. Take a look at your fine print or call customer service to find out if you have any data access included in your subscription. This is not technically free, but if you never knew you had access to hotspots across the city, it's the next best thing.

instabridge hors connexion wifi
Some cable companies provide free access to Wi-Fi networks. / © ANDROIDPIT

Give and take

Rather than endlessly sucking up other people's Wi-Fi connections, you can take a slightly more give and take approach and share your Wi-Fi hotspot (at home or work, for example) in exchange for other people's. Simply share your details, log in and be prepared to return the favor when you have Wi-Fi access of your own.

Hotspotio Install on Google Play

How do you get free Wi-Fi? What do you do when there is no Wi-Fi? Tell us in the comments.



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  • Mark_Two 6 months ago Link to comment

    Now many of these applications and sites. I can name at least another one - And do not forget about security, using public WiFi.)

  • Abby Ou 10 months ago Link to comment


  • Denismth 11 months ago Link to comment

    Maybe this will be helpful:

  • None is so useful...

  • Or you can find a hotspot anywhere!

  • I see a lot of comments of people , like they have been using Internet and computers from 2 weeks ! - Dilettantes !!!

  •   18
    anshul Dec 3, 2015 Link to comment

    We fi unable to connect to WI-FI which is password protected.

  • I found a mi fi at a goodwill but even though. !y devi ce finds it I cannot log on to it because Verizon wants me to pay..,.I'm not going to pay I'll try to hack it but I'm doubting I can

  • Any article that opens up with premises such as avoiding visiting a friend because he doesn't have Wi-Fi in his home, or not stopping in a cafe simply because they don't offer free Wi-Fi to their patrons is an utter crock! Seriously, get a life. Your criteria for friendship are warped and your basis for deciding where to spend your money are nothing more than superficial at best.

    • Easy now killer...I'm pretty sure the writer was being sarcastic or facetious when he said the comment about not going to friends' homes w/o wifi, etc. He meant it as tongue-in-cheek. He's a writer/blogger, they tend to add humor in their articles. Loosen up a may enjoy more articles that way. :)

    • LOL, let me tell you, I travel a great deal in foreign countries, and because I never activate my phone when I travel, so my dependency on WIFI is big... so when ever i will stop to drink or eat somewhere, if not WIFI i keep on moving until I find ne...


  • Most European countries have Internet Data Plans ! - Don't skimp on this. Stop relying on Wi-Fi , just buy 4 G Internet Data plan (it's only 10- 20 dollars US a month , up to 36 GB monthly data usage). Problem solved !

  • Thank you for that helpful information

  • Thanks for the info i may have to download the wefi

  • 5URV1V0R Nov 26, 2015 Link to comment

    Free WiFi is a life saver especially when traveling without a roaming data plan :)

  • Have you ever tried BOINGO ? w w ........... ........... .......... ..... ...... ............ ......... ....... ......... ......... .......... ........... ................ ......... ............. .......... { Few words about free Wi-Fi Internet access at Lester Pearson International Airport - Toronto, Canada , ... - don't be fooled , with widely advertised free Internet , they have open access to websites only. - It's probably the only idiot-airport on the whole World with such the limitation ! }

  • I spend quite a lot of time in rural Spain now and, although in many ways it resembles the UK of 50 years ago, there seems to be free WiFi everywhere. Ask for a password and it will be given! Few of the locals bother to use it preferring to make the most of visits to cafes, restaurants and bars as social occasions so the demand is usually low.
    And, by the way, I'm not complaining about the resemblance to the UK of 50 years ago. I like it!

  • I don't understand what is this whole crazy story about free wi-fi ? While in Belgrade - Serbia, Croatia, Greece , Sweden, Norway, Netherlands , I got access from the streets to hundreds of open wi-fi networks. I keep my wi-fi home network open (Toronto) - range approx. 300 meters. .................... What is this American paranoia all about ?!!!

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