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You’re on your phone furiously Googling “places with free Wi-Fi near me” before your data plan maxes out. Being able to find places with free Wi-Fi can be a lifesaver when your service is spotty or you’re trying to get some work done while you’re out and about. But where is the fastest public Wi-Fi?

We’ve listed the most common U.S.-based chains that you’ll find in most states which offer complimentary Wi-Fi to patrons. If you’re looking to use the Wi-Fi for an extended period of time, you may be expected to make a small purchase to secure a seat without issue, but otherwise, you can log on for free!

A person's hand holding a phone that is displaying the welcome screen for connecting to Target wifi above a Target shopping cart.

Restaurants With Free Wi-Fi

Dunkin’ Donuts

You can also enjoy some sweet, free Wi-Fi at Dunkin’ Donuts locations. If you find yourself in one of the 41 states that have a Dunkin’, you can set up shop and enjoy fast browsing speeds as you sip a cold brew and try not to get sprinkles on your keyboard.

One caveat to connecting to the free Wi-Fi at Dunkin’ Donuts is that you’ll be required to set up a DunkinNation account. While this is free, it may be a bit of a hassle if you’d rather not sign up for anything to get online. If you’re looking for places with free wifi 24/7, Dunkin’ does have limited business hours, but you may be able to pick up a signal from outside.

 

McDonald’s

If you’re searching for places with free Wi-Fi near me, you’re likely to find yourself at a McDonald’s. With locations in all 50 states and 100 countries abroad, you’ll be able to get free Wi-Fi in one of over 38,000 McDonald’s locations worldwide.

To get free Wi-Fi at McDonald’s, you don’t need to be a paying customer, and you most likely can access the free Wi-Fi from the parking lot. Though, signal strength can vary by location.

 

Panera

If you’re looking for places with free Wi-Fi in the parking lot, look no further than Panera. While dining in at Panera, you don’t need a special code to log on, and Wi-Fi is complimentary. To dine in with something to nosh on, baguettes and chips are available as cheap as $0.99, and refillable beverages are just over $2.

With over 2,000 locations in 49 states, you can grab a snack and utilize the restaurant’s free Wi-Fi for hours. If you’re on the move, Panera uniquely offers an extended Wi-Fi radius to accommodate Curbside customers, so you can pick up a signal and enjoy free Wi-Fi from your car as well.

 

Subway

Subway is another popular food chain that offers free Wi-Fi at most locations. One caveat to be aware of: this chain is owned by franchisees. While the brand is moving towards offering free Wi-Fi at all Subway locations, availability may vary by location.

If you’re looking at dining in, or you’re unable to connect to the Wi-Fi from the parking lot, you can become a patron by purchasing a fountain drink or a bag of chips, two of the cheapest things on the menu.

Subway has over 37,000 locations in the United States, and many are located in small towns and along popular truck stops if you’re driving in a remote location. So chances are, you may be able to find a Subway with free Wi-Fi near you.

Starbucks

Where is the fastest public Wi-Fi? Chances are, it’s at a Starbucks in one of their over 15,000 locations in the U.S. You can connect to Google Fiber at any Starbucks location using “Starbucks-Google” or “Google Starbucks” as your network.

To log on, you’ll need to provide your name, ZIP code, and email address. You can use the Wi-Fi for free and don’t need a qualifying purchase if you’re able to connect outside. If you’d prefer to browse inside, a cup of tea or a plain cup of hot coffee will be your cheapest option so you can dwell awhile without worrying about loitering.

Taco Bell

Needing Wi-Fi really late? Taco Bell is one of your best bets where you can use the Wi-Fi for free at one of their over 7,000 locations in the United States. Many Taco Bell locations are open until 1 a.m., though only through the drive-thru. The dining area does close later at night, but you likely can connect to the Wi-Fi from the parking lot.

If you’re dining in to access the free Taco Bell Wi-Fi, the cheapest thing on the menu is their soft tacos, but they also have a Cravings Menu with bites for around $1.

Stores With Free Wi-Fi

Barnes & Noble

This store is designed to get you to come and stay awhile, so check out the latest best-selling thrillers and enjoy free Wi-Fi among the stacks. Do some shopping or simply set up shop with a coffee or tea in the Starbucks on-site.

Purchase is not required to utilize the free Wi-Fi, and most locations are open until 9 p.m. With only 600 stores nationwide, it may be harder to find a location on your next cross-country road trip, but you’ll have the most comfortable seating at this chain!

 

Target

You can’t miss it if you head to Target to access their free Wi-Fi while shopping in store! With over 1,900 locations in all 50 U.S. states, you can spend some time at the Dollar Spot or sipping on a cold brew while you enjoy free Wi-Fi.

Simply connect to the Target Guest Wi-Fi network — it’s the same at most stores, and you’ll be quickly connected. While service may be spotty in parts of the store, you should have a good connection up front in their food court or Starbucks.

 

Walmart

With nearly 5,000 locations throughout the United States and several more worldwide, you can find a Walmart quickly, no matter where you are. Wi-Fi is free to customers and easy to log on to. Simply select Walmart’s guest Wi-Fi network and begin browsing, no password or receipt required.

If you’re expecting to be online for a bit, you may want to grab a seat outside the store or at a restaurant within your Walmart location. This may require a small purchase, but a fountain drink off the Dollar Menu can buy you some time to browse without hassle.

Places Where You Can Use Wi-Fi for Free