I'll be travelling next weekend to England for two weeks. What would be the best way to have access to the internet during the trip?

Do phone companies offer WiFi dongles for tourists?

  • My experience: Walk about 100 yards with your phone scanning the wifi. You will find an open connection. Maybe it is a good place to eat a snack?
    – Phil
    Jun 5, 2014 at 21:10
  • It's an idea but I think I need a more persistent solution! The dongle seems like the best option.
    – Karlth
    Jun 7, 2014 at 9:15

2 Answers 2


Internet is everywhere in the UK. You can buy a wifi dongle with prepaid sim card in any mobile phone store on any network. The price is reasonable - about £15 for the dongle itself, which include 1 GB of data. Then you just pay for data packs (£7-10 per GB of data depending on the network).

Most hotels offer WiFi these days. Most small hotels include it into the price, larger ones charge for it. In addition, majority of coffee shops, cafes and even McDonalds offer free wifi for their customers.

The long story short - you won't have any troubles getting online.

  • So I can just walk into a phonestore and buy a wifi dongle with a prepaid card? I don't need an UK telephone number or a UK credit card?
    – Karlth
    Jun 5, 2014 at 10:21
  • You may be able to get a slightly better deal by buying online for delivery to somewhere you'll be at the start of the trip, but for the simplest option walk into one of the multi-network stores like Carphone Warehouse and ask them what's on offer that day. For a pre-paid (PAYG = Pay As You Go), you pay then walk out
    – Gagravarr
    Jun 5, 2014 at 10:29
  • 1
    @user357320 In addition to what Gagravarr said, you don't even need to give them your name or address. They will ask you - but you can decline to give them.
    – Aleks G
    Jun 5, 2014 at 10:53
  • 4
    Just to add that also a lot of pubs now provide free wifi, and there are a lot of pubs in London.
    – Family
    Jun 5, 2014 at 12:07
  • 1
    Currently 3 is significantly the cheapest for PAYG data with 7 Gig for £25 (or 3 Gig for £10). Jun 6, 2014 at 10:37

FON is a global wifi network from Spain. The concept is simple, you share your wifi with other FON members and as a result you can use WIFI from other FON members world wide. For the UK this is specifically interesting, since FON teamed up with British Telecom. Every BT member has FON included. If you check the global coverage map, you will notice that because if this the UK is well served. (As is Belgium where Belgacom has a similar arrangement with FON. )

All you need to do to enjoy FON is to buy a FON router and connect it to your Internet router at home. It is a one time investment. I have been a FON member since 2007, when I bought my FON router. It is still working and I have enjoyed WIFI access world wide. For Android there is a FON app that automatically connects when a FON router is in close proximity.

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