Your 90-Second Guide to Finding Free Wi-Fi in Airports

Layovers just got a bit more bearable

September 28, 2016 9:00 am

If you’re reading this article at the airport … we feel your frustration.

Maybe you arrived at our site via an iffy free Wi-Fi connection, or one that only allows 30-minute access and forces you to watch ads (thanks, Boingo — which admittedly seems to be getting better).

Still, if you’re not ensconced in an airport lounge, finding a decent wireless connection in a crowded airport just adds to your travel hassles. Ergo, we offer nine hacks to help you surf around with ease while you’re stuck on the ground.

Consult this list: It looks janky as hell, but Wi-Fi FreeSpot Directory has a list of every airport with free wireless access (along with free Wi-Fi offered by hotels, restaurants and businesses).

Use this app: WiFox is a continually updated map of airport and lounge WiFi passwords, as created by travel guru Anil Polat — a map version is available here. The best little detail about the app? It works offline and you can copy/paste passwords with one click.

Or this one: FLIO directly connects you to an airport’s Wi-Fi if it’s available, while also offering exclusive discounts, transport options from the airport and useful info (like finding charging stations).

Bookmark the following page: Besides suggesting a few intensive hacks, Polat also suggests a few simpler WiFi workarounds, including calling the ticket counter and asking the clerks for access, or just complaining to your nearest airline rep if your flight is late to get free wireless password. Or just mooch off of airport lounges — if you can’t get in, Polat keeps a list of passwords for those off-limit areas here.

Get a Priority Pass: You’re technically paying for this service, but it offers access to 950 airport lounges worldwide, where WiFi is almost always free.

Sneak into the lounge: This guy figured out how to do it with fake QR codes.

Remember this old-school app: We might be the last people who still use Foursquare. But as The Next Web points out, you can look on the app at people’s comments for Wi-Fi passwords (and use the “WiFi” filter to narrow down your search).

Use this hack: Want to browse, but don’t have a free connection? Add a ?.jpg at the end of a URL. It’s an old trick, but worth a shot in second-tier airports.

Or just don’t use WiFi: Your cell phone might be faster. Here are the 11 airports with blazingly fast cell service and the carrier works best in each.


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