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Hotel chains that charge for WiFi and ones that don’t

- November 6th, 2013
Fotolia

Fotolia

In a February 2013 survey from Hotels.com, it was revealed that the one thing Canadians want most in their hotel rooms is free WiFi. In today’s wired world, web access at hotels has become paramount for both business and leisure travellers who want to stay connected with work, family and friends or look up local restaurants and hot spots on the go.

It’s easy to see why Canadians would be bothered. WiFi is available free of charge at fast food chains like McDonald’s and Tim Hortons, but at some $200-a-night hotels, guests can pay up to $15 for 24 hours of WiFi or wired Internet access.

Not all hotels nickel and dime their guests for web access, though. Check out the 20 popular hotel chains below to see which ones are charging for WiFi or Internet and which are offering it to guests for free.

Trump Chicago. (Nicole Feenstra photo)

Trump Chicago

HOTEL CHAINS OFFERING FREE WIFI OR INTERNET

- Delta Hotels
- Fairmont Hotels (with free President’s Club membership)
- Best Western Hotels
- Trump Hotels
- Ace Hotels
- Kimpton Hotels
- Days Inn
- Holiday Inn Hotels
- Andaz Hotels
- Four Seasons Hotels

Embassy Suites Myrtle Beach. (Nicole Feenstra photo)

Embassy Suites Myrtle Beach

HOTEL CHAINS CHARGING FOR WIFI OR INTERNET

- Westin Hotels
- J.W. Marriott Hotels
- Embassy Suites Hotels
- Hyatt Hotels
- St. Regis Hotels
- Sheraton Hotels
- Mandarin Oriental Hotels
- Ritz-Carlton Hotels
- Waldorf Astoria Hotels
- InterContinental Hotels

For even more, check out this in-depth report from HotelChatter on hotels offering free WiFi and the ones around the world that don’t.

What kind of experiences have you had when accessing WiFi and Internet at hotels? Have you stayed at a hotel in one of the above chains that has started offering free WiFi? Sound off in the comments section below.

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24 comments

  1. George Thomas | November 7, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    The hilton does not charge for WI-FI! Never has! For full Service internet, we do, 7.95

  2. Stebe | November 8, 2013 at 9:07 am

    If I have to pay for WIFI I just use my phones Data and stream off that. I have 6 gigs so no worries there. Another gauging scheme by hotels. That and their parking

  3. Stephen Taylor | November 8, 2013 at 9:38 am

    I have stayed at the Intercontinental – Holiday Inn Express in Halifax, NS and have never paid for WIFI or in room connection for my laptop.

  4. Ian Whiteley | November 8, 2013 at 9:45 am

    Actually, the Hilton does charge unless you want to go sit down in the lobby with everyone else. If you want internet in your room, I was told 12.95/day.

    Free was only available in a small room which at that time was packed with young kids making a racket, playing music and games. Not very conducive to a productive work environment or private conversations with co-workers and/or loved ones.

  5. Bill | November 8, 2013 at 10:30 am

    I like free wi-fi BUT it has been my experience that the reception is spotty in hotels offering it gratis while it is reliable in hotels where there is a charge. You get what you pay or don’t pay for. Given the choice I prefer the reliable service even if it costs me extra.

  6. Anderson Davies | November 8, 2013 at 10:50 am

    Marriott Residence Inns do not charge either

  7. Jim Myles | November 8, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Free WIFI without internet access is useless? WIFI to everyone nowadays means you have internet access. You don’t charge for connecting to the hotel router, but you do for internet access, so YA, you do charge for wifi.

  8. Kurt | November 8, 2013 at 11:17 am

    Most hotels in Vegas charge BIG bucks for wifi – most useless city in North America!!!!

  9. Eddie74 | November 8, 2013 at 11:20 am

    @ George, What a scam the Hilton is then. What’s the point of WiFi without Internet? Sounds like an advertising scam. FREE WIFI, but to access the internet you have to pay 7.95

    I noticed it’s all the high end hotels that charge for WiFi, just like the hotel that work put us up in for training and meetings, they know you’re either rich, or someone else is paying, so they charge for everything. Last time I stayed at Hilton, it was cheaper to walk down to the lobby and use the pay phone (25 cents) than it was to place the same call from my room (1.50 per local call)

  10. sundawg56 | November 8, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    I have stayed at the Wyndham Hotel in Calgary twice in the past 1 1/2 weeks and there was NO charge for wifi/internet!

  11. Jack | November 8, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    I am a Marriot Platinum Elite member. That means I spend over 80 nights a year at Marriot Hotels. I have never had to pay for WiFi. They do have an option in some places for FiOs for which there is a charge. The speed is at least tripple, but it is not really necessary.

  12. Marie | November 8, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    sorry, but just came back from Atlantic city and stayed at Trump plaza….WIFI not free, $12.95 a day…..

  13. mike e | November 8, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    I usually stay at the hotel 8 in Niagara Falls and the 3 times I’ve been there
    I never paid for WI FI service. hotel 8 is owned by the wyndham corp.
    overall their WIFI is included at hotel 8.

  14. Diane | November 8, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    This should be included in the hotel amenities. Most travellers use their smart phones or tablets and expect this kind of service.

  15. Diane | November 8, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    another scam is the amount that cruise ships charge to use the internet

  16. Stephanie | November 8, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    Recently stayed at the State Street embassy suites in Chicago. they charged wifi/internet connection in the room for each device that you wished to connect. I have never encountered that before!

  17. Bronx | November 8, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    Charging for wifi now a days would be like charging for cable tv in the room. It use to be something special but should be a standard item and not just in the lobby.

  18. Debbie | November 8, 2013 at 6:12 pm

    Best Western and Choice (Comfort Inn, Quality Inn etc) hotels offer free WiFi.

  19. Darrin | November 11, 2013 at 11:20 pm

    $20.00 a day resort fee at MGM properties in Las Vegas and no WiFi…

  20. Todd | November 12, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    The Marriot in Springfield, MA, USA charges for internet.

  21. Josh | December 26, 2013 at 11:26 am

    I just stay away from those who charges extra for WiFi and Parking, when not possible I use my own cellular data plan. For the parking, well sometime you are out of luck specially in the big cities and have to pay but at the same time you have peace of mind since the car should be in a secured area!

  22. Junk Mail | December 26, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    The WiFi does not have to be free per say. They just need to bury the price in the price of the room. When 93 percent of the respondents say they want WiFi, then the 7 percent need to suck it up and accept the fact that they are getting WiFi. There was a time when not everyone was looking for this service. So it made sense to charge for those that did. But charging you seperately for a service that almost everyone wants is like charging you for the pillows on your bed. Technically, they do. But it’s built into the price of the room.

  23. Alberta Ed | December 26, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    I won’t willingly stay at a hotel without WiFi. However, most often the signal is very poor at the hotels that do.

  24. AylmerBob | April 11, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    I avoid hotels that charge for Internet/ WiFi, local telephone calls and parking. The latter is hard to avoid in inner city. In my view, WiFi is just as essential in a hotel room as towels, shampoo and soap. I can easily bring my own. In fact, I usually do bring a Wireless Internet device in case hotel WiFi is useless. Maybe shouldn’t have said that, Westin may pick up on it and start charging for soap, the chintzy ba___rds.

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