I cannot for the life of me remember a time when the internet was not a necessity! They are moments when you are out and about and you really just need access to Wi-Fi. The question is, what places can you get free WiFi? It can really be a lifesaver, especially if you need access to the Internet on a laptop.
If you are new to an area or just really needing Wi-Fi access, knowing the top places to find free WiFi can be a lifesaver. In this article, we will go over the places where you can get free Wi-Fi and how you can do it safely. Just because a coffee shop has Wi-Fi doesn’t mean that your data to secure! Without further ado, here we go!
The first and most popular places to get free WiFi is Starbucks! They are very well known to be accommodating to people that need access to the internet. They are internet access is also very fast so you don’t have to worry about that. The only thing to consider is that oh, most people in there half the same idea is you! Since Starbucks is very popular for people that just need to work while having a cup of coffee, it is usually pretty busy. So, if you’re looking for a quiet place to have Wi-Fi, Starbucks might not be the best option. However, you can’t really beat their chai tea latte while you have power outlets and blazing fast internet 🙂
McDonald’s is a close second when it comes to the best places to get free WiFi! As much as I hate to admit this, I really do love eating at Mcdonald’s. I get a lot of crap for saying that too, but they have some pretty good fries 🙂 Their Lobby is usually pretty empty since most people just go through the drive-thru so it would be relatively quiet. Only caveat is that, you are not guaranteed to find Outlets. If you are working on a laptop and it needs to charge it while you use the internet, then you might need to show up fully charged.
3. Panera Bread
Although Panera Bread does not have as many locations as the above restaurants, they have pretty dependable and stable Wi-Fi. One thing to note is that during lunch and dinner rush hours, some stores Implement a half-hour time limit per computer! If you just need a quick Google or just checking your email, then this might not be a problem. However, if you need hours of access, then Panera Bread might not work for you. I do really love their atmosphere oh, so I still highly recommend it.
As a chicken lover myself, I could not help but also recommend KFC! They are a fantastic menu with cheap items to choose from, but they do not have the fastest internet around. Personally, KFC has deteriorated in terms of food quality. This means that you will typically find KFC restaurants empty. The bright side is, you will have Wi-Fi access all to yourself!
5. Burger King
Burger King offers extremely cheap meals that are really filling. If you need a space with Wi-Fi access and cheap food, Burger King is a good choice. Their internet is nothing to brag about, but it is very consistent. Just like McDonald’s, Burger King’s Lobby he’s rarely crowded, so you won’t have to compete with too many people on the same Wi-Fi.
If you are in the mood for a footlong sandwich and very decent Wi-Fi, Subway is a good choice. Treat yourself to a $5 sub and get access to very decent internet that will let you get some work done. Again, you might have issues finding an outlet but the internet speed might be well worth it.
7. Taco Bell
Unlike most restaurant chains, Taco Bell was late to the game when it comes to free Wi-Fi. However, since 2011, Taco Bell now offers one of the fastest internet speeds on this list. If you’re thinking about grabbing yourself some tacos or nachos while enjoying free blazing fast internet, then make sure to hit up one of their stores!
Walmart is by far the largest grocery store chain in the country! That means that no matter where you are, you are probably near a Walmart. This is pretty convenient if you just need quick access to Wi-Fi. On paper, the Wi-Fi is reserved for paying customers, but you could always access it just inside near the checkout Lanes. However, they are Wi-Fi is really on the slow end! If you just need quick Wi-Fi access with your phone or something, then Walmart might be a good option.
9. Best Buy
This is one of my favorite stores on this list! Similar to Walmart, they reserved access to their Wi-Fi for paying customers. It would be hard to just walk in, stand in one spot, and just use the Wi-Fi. His wife I might be a great option when you are researching what you want to buy from there. If you need to sit down and be productive, and then one of the restaurants on this list might be a better option.
10. Tim Hortons
This Canadian-based coffee shop can be compared to Starbucks! Although not as popular, it gives its customers access to free Wi-Fi and some good coffee and donuts. It doesn’t have blazing fast internet as Starbucks does, but it will get the job done. Pop into your local Tim Hortons and enjoy some free decent internet.
How to use public wifi safely
Now that you have a good list of places to get free Wi-Fi, it’s also just as important to keep your data safe when you do so! You would be surprised just how often people’s private data is stolen and used for nefarious reasons. Since this wi-fi is just public and insecure, you will need to be a little more cautious.
1. Use a junk email address
If the public Wi-Fi you are using requires an email address, then it might be a good idea to use a junk email address. When you sign up for these free Wi-Fi access points, you are basically giving your email address away for marketing and soliciting purposes. You don’t want to start getting junk email all over the place. You don’t have to do this, but it is highly recommended.
2. Use reputable WiFi access points
If you’re searching for free Wi-Fi, don’t just connect to any random Wi-Fi. If you are in a Starbucks store, look for the Starbucks branded Wi-Fi network. Don’t just join Charlie’s Free WiFi Here since you have no idea where that it’s coming from. Make sure that whatever Wi-Fi network you are joining is branded the same as where you are located.
3. Avoid banking sites
Since you are on unsecured Wi-Fi, You might want to avoid banking or other financial institution sites. A hacker might be able to intercept your internet traffic and see what credentials do you are sending through the internet. Yes, Banks and other financial institutions usually have Security in place for that, but you can never really fully trust a public unsecured Wi-Fi. Try to wait until you are back home or on your mobile phone.
4. Use a VPN
Finally, you should really consider using a VPN. Maybe peeing is a virtual private Network that completely encrypts and secures all your internet traffic. Not even public Wi-Fi can intercept your traffic when using a VPN. Services such as Nord VPN (which I use and highly recommend) do just this! Super easy and extremely secure