If you are travelling to London and do not have any mobile data in the UK, or if you have run out of data on your mobile contract, do not fear because there are a number of places you van get free WiFi in the Big Smoke! London can be a confusing city to move around in and a difficult one to find attractions near where you are, so it is certainly handy being able to access the internet when you are out and about.
The Cloud WiFi in London
Since 2006, London has been partnered with The Cloud, who provide WiFi coverage across the city. This stands at about 95% coverage in the City of London, and they have over 200,000 hotspots across the UK. The Cloud WiFi can be accessed at popular spots across the capital such as Pret a Manger, Pizza Express, Wagamama and shopping centres.
All you have to do to access this is create an account on their website with a username and a password, and log in when you are in a hotspot. Be sure to download The Cloud app, where you can access their map of hotspots offline.
Free WiFi in London for Broadband or Mobile Customers
If you live in the UK and are a customer of O2, Virgin Media, EE, Vodafone or Three, then you can access Virgin Media WiFi on the London Underground system. Transport for London (TFL) have partnered with Virgin to provide free WiFi in over 260 stations across the city. All you have to do is sign in when prompted once you connect to the WiFi. If you are not a customer with any of these companies then don’t worry, Virgin Media offer daily passes for £2, weekly passes for £5, and monthly passes for £10.
Apart from the WiFi network on the tube, Sky, Virgin and BT also have a number of their own hotspots available around the city for their customers. It is worth taking this into account when you are shopping around for your next mobile or broadband deal.
Starbucks are also partnered with O2, and provide free connection for two hours in their cafés. You can log out and reconnect after two hours, so don’t worry if you plan to stay for a long time.
Other WiFi Hotspots in London
If you are travelling into one of London’s many airports and need information on where you are going, chances are that you will be able to access free WiFi there. At Heathrow, all five terminals allow you to connect to the WiFi for up to 45 minutes a day. At Stansted, this increases to up to an hour, whereas Luton also provides its own free WiFi service.
It is also worth bearing in mind the other many ways that you can access free WiFi in London. Most public attractions and amenities offer WiFi, so do not be scared to take a seat in a café, pub or a restaurant and ask for access to their internet. Who knows, you may even gain a valuable experience out of it, such as trying a new craft ale or sample some of London’s famously international food!
On top of this, most museums including the The British Museum, The National Gallery and The Victoria and Albert Museum all provide free WiFi, so go and check out one of the many exhibitions that are on. The same applies to libraries and markets, with places like Camden Market and the British Library being great places to visit regardless of whether you need to use the internet or not.