Tag: WiFi HellView All Tags
London hotels have made some great improvements on the WiFi scene in recent years with more and more hotels offering it for free (see that list here.) Which is why there's really no need to stay at The Haymarket Hotel.
London Hotel News pointed out to us that the hotel charges at least £350 a night and doesn't even disclose on their website that they will charge for WiFi which TripAdvisor reviewers say starts at 30p a minute!
As much as we hate W Hotels for charging for WiFi, at least all of their hotels tell you exactly how much you will be paying for internet on their websites.
Sorry, Haymarket--you're pretty to look at but looks aren't everything. Free WiFi is. Maybe you should take a hint from your good-looking cousin in the states, The Crosby Street Hotel?
Relaxing weekends never pan out the way you planned them do they? And our trip to Seville this weekend was no exception. Leaving aside the whiplash from the crashy landing on Sunday night (thanks Ryanair) and the fact that we didn’t partake in enough cerveza sessions, we spent much of the two days seething about the dire internet situation at the Hotel Alfonso XII, where we were shacked up.
Switching on the laptop as is our wont on arrival at a hotel, we were sad to see no WiFi networks showing. Yes there was an ethernet cable, but our 'pooter lacks the requisite hole.
We called reception, who told us not to worry, that there was a computer downstairs for us to check our email. So we worried. Is there no wireless, we asked. The answer came back: "Yes, but it’s better to use our computer. " Ugh, we worried even more.
We are suckers for a room with a killer view. We find that we are even more likely to forgive some minor hotel inconveniences if we can stare out the window at something pretty--yeah we are that shallow. Let's help out our fellow hotel mavens by uploading rooms with killer views to the HotelChatter/Flickr photo pool, or by sending the photo along to us. We will feature our favorites in this space from time to time. Remember to tell us the name of the hotel and the room number of the hot view.
It's not that often that we get rooms with a killer view in Las Vegas. Like everything else in Sin City--if you want it, you gotta pay for it. And room views do cost extra. But last month we found ourselves with a pleasant view of The Wynn's (thankfully) tame pool scene and its golf course. And yeah, we zoomed in. A wider shot is after the jump.
Heavenly beds at the Westin Bonaventure in LA.
Most of us agree that the Westin Hotels Heavenly Bed feels quite nice and those of us who have tried the hotel brand's new Heavenly Bath toiletries would agree that the shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, et.al, go above and beyond what we would expect from hotel toiletries. But when it comes down to Westin WiFi, the experience is more hellacious than heavenly.
Westin is part of Starwood Hotels and while the WiFi is free in the lobbies, in-room guests have to pay. Usually the fee starts at $9.95 and goes up from there, depending on the hotel.
Paying for WiFi is akin to those ridiculous checked baggage fees that airlines charges, but if we pay for it we want that internet connection to be faster than Usain Bolt. Unfortunately, many hotels just take your money and leave you surfing the web at a snail's pace. But the worst is when you call down for help and they tell you to contact their service provider.
Yikes. We stumbled upon this shot on Flickr and were not pleased to lay our eyes upon it though we were grateful that our own WiFi connections were, um, at least fast enough to load Flickr in a timely fashion.
This is a screenshot from guest evoque, who apparently stayed at Gild Hall and had to fork over a 10-er in order to connect to the WiFi network. At a speed of 512k. Slow. Lame. Boo. The caption on the shot reads:
$10/day for a blazing 512k/512k WiFi connection it's more Internet side road than Internet superhighway.
And we all know that people who are down with clever wordplay deserve faster WiFi, right? Regardless, this could have been forgivable except that we haven't forgotten that Thompson Hotels' WiFi used to be totally free, and they just started charging for it this year. Ugh. If you're going to make us pay for this stuff, at least give us a decent connection to work with.
In an ideal, globally-connected world, all hotels would have free and fast WiFi. This is however not a perfect world, and so traveling across borders with the intention of checking your email or uploading pictures to your Flickr is often a bigger headache that it should be.
Our most recent instance of entering Hotel WiFi Hell occurred during our 3-night stay at the centrally-located and business traveler-happy Marriott Berlin. After enjoying free and freeflowing access at a much cheaper hotel elsewhere in the city for our first few days in Berlin, we were admittedly spoiled. Nonetheless, we found the internet plan at the Marriott too exorbitant for any visitor:
· One hour of access (common areas): € 6.95 ($9.72)
· One hour of access (in room): € 5.95 ($8.32)
· 24 hours: € 19.95 ($27.91)
· One week: € 99.75 ($139.56)
· One month: € 379.05 ($530.33)
Oh noes. Say what you will about Holiday Inns, but HI's Internet is usually, these days, fairly fast and totally free. Well, 'round these parts, anyway. We're sad to hear from Canadian blogger Andrew Currie that, over in Hong Kong, that's notsomuch the case. He documents his Internet troubles at the Holiday Inn Hong Kong Golden Mile:
Unlimited access set me back $160 HKD per day, or about $25 CAD. At this price you might think I'd be tempted to leave my laptop packed and use my phone exclusively, but even with Opera Mini paring down the average full web page to a paltry 50K or so I would still pay 5¢/kB in data roaming charges — or in other words, for the same cost per day I'd only be able to pull down a mere 10 web pages on my phone!
For an extra $40 HKD/day ($6.25 CAD) I could supposedly access the hotel-wide WiFi via my phone — a great idea for reading the morning news over breakfast in the restaurant, except that interTouch uses some kind of stupid web redirect to log in to their network, likely designed with laptops only in mind.
Boo. Oh, and to translate that to US dollars: that daily Internet charge of 160 HKD works out to just over $20, while the 40 HKD WiFi charge comes out to around $5. And the worldwide free WiFi crusade continues.
[Photo: Andrew Currie]
It's always shocking when a major hotel like the recently-renovated Atlanta Marriott Marquis isn't super convenient for business travelers. In this time of recessionary layoffs and cutbacks, the business and conference hotel is still obnoxiously charging for Internet connectivity. How hard it is to switch from broadband to WiFi, Mister Bill Marriott?
At $12.95 for noon-to-noon service in the rooms and then a discounted $9.95 around the food court on the reception and marquis levels, charging on top of the $159 to $221.95 a night for a king size bed in a city view room still seems cruel and unusual.
Guests hunched over their laptops outside the in-hotel Starbucks were not happy. We actually found some working connections not provided by the Marriott Marquis. Interestingly, from inside the Marriott Marquis we got free service from the Hyatt Regency Atlanta just across the street.
Hotel WiFi / Snapshot / W Hotels / WiFi Hell / → All Tags
One day of WiFi at W - The Court in NYC costs $16.95.
In the words of Twitterer wildedge: that's called Wi-F.U.
That is all.
Last night we landed in Las Vegas during a wind storm. After releasing our death grips on our seatmate and the armrest we thought our worries were over. We could now go on and enjoy Las Vegas as we were meant to.
We scored a great deal at the Mirage for $70 a night in one of those lovely renovated rooms we liked so much on our last visit. And after checking out the signs of life on the casino floor (there were plenty!), we headed up to our room to get connected.
After grumbling about the $14.99 WiFi charge, we hopped onto the WiFi network but to our dismay found the connection to be so terrible that we dragged our laptop over to the desk and plugged in the ethernet cable (free in the nightstand drawer.)
Yet while the casino floor may have been bustling below us, there was no sign of life on the internet in our room.
Perhaps we have been spoiled by the mid-market hotel WiFi situations over here in the United States. See, when we score a room in a mid-priced chain hotel where the rates run in the $100 neighborhood, we've come to expect free WiFi to be thrown into the deal.
This isn't really an unfair expectation: after doing our Annual WiFi Report for several years now, we've found the most exorbitant WiFi charges to come at us from the luxe chains, while many of the mid-market brands 'round these parts let us climb onto the Internet for free.
And so naturally, we were stunned to see that the newly revamped Park Inn London, Russell Square (whose rooms start at a totally decent 69 GBP, or about $97 USD) charges these sorts of prices for WiFi.
This screenshot comes to us via Flickr user sofiaGK, who noted that the "charges seem a bit excessive" and, um, we have to agree.
The hotel claims to be "celebrating functionality and fun" and 15 GBP for 24 hours of WiFi is neither functional nor fun.
Thompson giveth and then they taketh away. Just as we thought hotel chains were making some major progress on the free WiFi front, it saddens us deeply to report a major setback: The boutique-chic Thompson hotel chain, whose head honcho has spoken up in the past about the importance of free wireless internet, now seems to be charging guests to get online. Oh dear.
During our own stays at Thompson properties, we'd always been impressed with the ease at which we could get online to rave about the WiFi situation; the connection was fast and free and fab. But on a recent stay at the newest Thompson property, Smyth Tribeca, we were charged $10.95 per day of Internet. We did not in any way enjoy this, but we figured it was just a Smyth thing.