I’m a digital nomad that travels for free all over the world with just a backpack and my laptop. I’m constantly in need of free Wi-Fi since most of my work is done online. So with that being said, I’ve gathered the best places that offer reliable and high-speed Wi-Fi for free.
Don’t worry, these are all national chains that offer free Wi-Fi near you. So you can stop wondering “where to get free wifi near me?“
This list includes several free Wi-Fi locations, restaurants, and coffee shops where you can get free Wi-Fi, open Wi-Fi networks, and find free Wi-Fi via your provider. These free Wi-Fi slots are available in almost every city, and once you know where to go, you can enjoy free Wi-Fi at any time. This makes it extremely easy to find a place where you can relax and get your social media fix, send an email or even work a bit.
National Chains with Free Wi-Fi
When you’re at Starbucks, you can stay connected to your world with Wi-Fi service since they partnered with Google. To log on, simply select “Google Starbucks” Wi-Fi network, and when the Starbucks Wi-Fi landing page loads, complete the fields and click “Accept & Connect.” Finding one of the 7,000 Starbucks locations near you shouldn’t be an issue but you can use the store locater below to find one in case you’re traveling.
Store Locater: https://www.starbucks.com/store-locator
McDonald’s has over 11,500 locations that each offer free wireless access to its customers. Its Wi-Fi speeds are usually faster than other national chains. You can grab a Big Mac or just a coffee and get your work done here by finding a booth in the corner.
Restaurant Locater: https://www.mcdonalds.com/us/en-us/restaurant-locator.html
Panera Bread offers a comfortable location to get connected to the web and have an enjoyable meal (I love the pick 2 menu) or coffee. Even during COVID-19, you can sit down at a table or sofa chair and get high-speed internet for free. Just keep in mind that you might get kicked off the network after 30 minutes during busier hours. You can call your local Panera to confirm how long you are able to stay connected ahead of time by using the locator below.
Cafe Locator: https://www.panerabread.com/en-us/cafe-locator.html
Dunkin’ Doughnuts may not be as comfortable to work at like most Starbucks locations, but it still works. You can also grab a reasonably priced doughnut and coffee while you connect the world through its free Wi-Fi access. You can check to see if you have any Dunkin’ Doughnuts locations near you below.
Store Locator: https://www.dunkindonuts.com/en/locations
I was surprised to learn that the sports bar Buffalo Wild Wings offers reliable high-speed internet access. However, if you want to use it you’ll have to order some wings or go during happy hour where the prices are more affordable. But if you are in need of Wi-Fi access, and you have a BWW nearby, give it a go and you can also catch some sports games!
Restaurant Locator: https://www.buffalowildwings.com/en/locations/
If you’re close to a mall you can usually sit outside an Apple Store and connect to their fast Wi-Fi access. Or if you just need to use the internet for a bit, you can use their Macbooks or iMacs in the store which also are connected to the internet. Alternately, if you’re already in the mall, just head to the food court since they should offer free Wi-Fi for all to use.
Store Locator: https://www.apple.com/retail/
In case you are traveling and you want to stay at a hotel with reliable internet — then keep your eyes peeled for Marriott Hotels. Marriott locations, including Fairfield Inn and Springs, SpringHill Suites, Residence Inn, and TownPlace offer fast Wi-Fi and a great rewards program for travelers. Most budget-friendly hotels also offer free internet and Wi-Fi so consider those if you’re trying to save money.
Hotel Locator: https://www.marriott.com/search/default.mi
The popular organic grocery store chain will also be able to satisfy your quest for free Wi-Fi. Since most Whole Foods are equipped with cafes and dining areas — you can likely get away with using its free internet without spending a dime.
Store Locator: https://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores
Often times I can spot a Staples or Office Depot while I’m traveling and they always offer wireless access when I need to upload a video or pop off an email. I usually go to a corner of the store and can I use the internet for as long as I want. Staples employees don’t really bother you as they do at Barnes and Noble (weird, right?).
Store Locator: https://stores.staples.com/search
If you need to send a quick email or browse the web you can visit your local Target. While shopping, you can connect to the stores free Wi-Fi in order to save on data. Some Target’s have Starbucks or Target Cafes which are great for sitting down. Check out your options by using the Target locator below.
Store Locator: https://www.target.com/store-locator/find-stores
You can get public Wi-Fi near you if you have a Barnes & Noble around your neighborhood. Most locations have a Starbucks on-site, which offers a place to have coffee and eat with free Wi-Fi. You can also read a book and find a nice corner to yourself and surf the web! Most locations should be fine to use the Wi-Fi uninterrupted, but sometimes, I’ve been asked to leave after using it for over an hour and not buying anything (your mileage may vary).
Store Locator: https://store-locator.barnesandnoble.com/
Got a Best Buy nearby? You can quickly pop in and use the Wi-Fi for a bit or use the computers in the store which all are connected to the net. While you can’t write an entire essay in-store, light browsing or sending off an email is possible at Best Buy locations.
Store Locator: https://www.bestbuy.com/site/store-locator
Other Free Wi-Fi Options
There are alternative Wi-Fi ideas for you to get on the internet in no time. Here are the nearest places to get free Wi-Fi near your location. The closest Wifi connection shouldn’t be too far, no matter where you are in the US:
Use a Hotspot Database Location
The demand for free public access points is such that complete applications are specifically designed to help users find them. The hotspot database applications contain a huge list of Wi-Fi hotspots around the world, and some even have passwords for hotspots that are inaccessible to the public without paying.
One of the best ones to use is WifiMap. This excellent and easy-to-use hotspot database application contains a long list of hotspots and information about it. For each access point, you can view Foursquare and WifiMapper comments, the type of access point and the exact location. In the future, developers of this application would like to implement a function for password sharing and wireless access points.
Visit Popular Wi-Fi Hotspot Locations
There are some places where you will almost certainly find a free Wi-Fi access point. If you’ve ever wondered how to get free Wi-Fi access at home, you might consider going right next to one of the locations below:
- Libraries – The aim of libraries is to promote the education of the local community. Offering free internet access is just one of the ways in which libraries pursue their goal.
- Public spaces – In recent years, cities around the world have begun to cover public squares with free Wi-Fi access points to attract more visitors to local stores.
- Restaurants – McDonald’s, Starbucks, Ben & Jerry’s and other popular fast food chains, ice cream parlors and restaurants have long discovered the power to generate revenue with free Wi-Fi hotspots.
Look for Hidden Wi-Fi Networks
Wireless networks are identified by SSIDs (Service Set Identifiers), which essentially serve as network names. Without much work, it’s possible to hide a network’s SSID and thus create a hidden network that won’t be readily visible to various WiFi-enabled devices.
But just because a WiFi network is hidden doesn’t mean it can’t be discovered. Using a Wi-Fi analyzer app such as NetSpot, it’s possible to find all nearby hidden networks.
Get Free Wi-Fi Access Through Your ISP
A man and a woman using a cell phone in a coffee shop. Although it is not a free way to get Wi-Fi, as a paying customer of some ISPs, you can access free Wi-Fi hotspots in the hundreds of thousands of locations in the United States.
This works via the Wi-Fi cable, common network name created by Cox Communications, Optimum and XFINITY to offer free Wifi to their subscribers.
This means that if you are at home via Cox, you can still benefit from your subscription during your trip.
Tether Your Phone
If you have a smartphone, one of the most obvious but still useful options is to connect your 5G or LTE connection to your computer. We’ve talked about our favorite apps for sharing iPhone and Android, but keep in mind that they have to be prepared a little in advance. iPhone users must first jailbreak, and Android users need root (but only for sharing Wifi connections, sharing USB connection without root access). The good thing about this is that it works almost everywhere, as long as you prepare your phone, you will never be without a connection.
With all these tips, it is very important to remember that when you connect to a public Wi-Fi network, you open up a lot of your data to the rest of the world. Therefore, when using this policy, you must make every effort to remain safe on public Wi-Fi networks.
The entire process may take a couple of hours, but the effort is well worth your time.
Public Wi-Fi Safety
When you’re using public Wi-Fi be sure to remember the following tips:
- Don’t enter sensitive information on online sites
- Use ‘https’ (secure) websites as much as possible
- Forget the network after using
- Enable two-factor authentication on frequently visited sites.
Conclusion On Finding Free Wi-Fi Near Me?
In this modern era, most homeowners believe in the network solution because it allows them to stay connected at all times. They prefer to use this service because it helps them to go home with their laptop without having to worry about the internet connection.
Not only do people use the wireless network solution for domestic help, but they also use this new technology if they have their own office or if they hold high positions in a particular organization. This is just because Ethernet cables give the office a disorganized and cultural appearance. To avoid having too many cables, you can easily contact a supplier of reliable wireless network solutions.
Using the above techniques provides you a means to see where your network reaches, determine how fast your network performs by location, view interference from neighboring networks, and optimize your laptops and smartphones for the best possible performance. Applied properly, these simple steps will make your wireless network fly!
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What has your experience been using free Wi-Fi near you? Do you prefer using Wi-Fi at restaurants where you can also eat or stores?
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