Planning on traveling with your laptop and wondering if you'll be able to get online? There are a few tools that can help you figure out where the Wi-Fi hotspots will be when you arrive at your destination.
- Yahoo! Mobile Hotspot Finder is one that I really like - you provide the address and range of distance around the address, and Yahoo! brings back a list, sorted by distance from the address you provided. The list also tells you which provider / network each hotspot belongs to, and the hourly rate.
- JiWire is also very good. It offers similar functionality to the Yahoo! site and allows you to filter according to the pricing plan you are seeking - i.e. free, fee, Holiday Inn, Boingo, or Wayport. I've got a T-Mobile annual pass, so this one is less practical for me, though.
- You can also try WiFiFreeSpot if you are just looking for free hotspots - it has a page that tells you which airports offer free hotspots
The tricky thing is to remember to check for them before you go. Unless you have a PDA or phone that gives you internet access, it could be tricky to find a Wi-Fi hotspot unless you have one already.
Of course, it is also becoming increasingly easy to find coffee shops that offer free wireless, but if you're going to hang out and use their resource, please be nice: buy a cup or two if you're going to use their service (and maybe a scone or something).