I will be staying in New York City for a week, and I am wondering about Internet access. Using my own SIM it will cost me $26 / day for 50 MiB, then $3 for every MiB after that. That quickly becomes very expensive.

Is it possible to rent a wireless 4G router? Or can I get a prepaid SIM for this purpose? Are there other options for tourist Internet, many places with free wifi?

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    Depending how "free" you want it, I'd be surprised if there's a single cafe in the city that won't let you use their wifi if you buy a cup of coffee. And in the denser parts of the city there are several cafes on every block. Commented Jul 25, 2014 at 18:35
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    There are many pre-paid SIM options much cheaper than $26/day. Just use google. SimpleMobile and H2O Wireless are the ones I'm familiar with. You can get something like 2-5GB at 3/4G speeds for about US $40 per month.
    – Flimzy
    Commented Jul 25, 2014 at 19:07
  • McDonalds has free wifi in the US. I don't think you'll have a lot of issue trying to find free wifi, a lot of places seem to offer it in Manhattan atleast. T-Mobile has a 30 dollar plan which does 5Gb of 4G on Prepaid, that might be worth looking into. Commented Jul 26, 2014 at 1:32

3 Answers 3


A friend recently referred me to Karma, a no-contract pre-paid wifi spot that you can take with you on your travels. While I haven't used it firsthand, my friends give it a thumbs up. Amazon indicates that coverage can be spotty depending on where you travel, but since you're going to New York, you shouldn't have a problem. The company is based out of NYC.

Here's their official site: https://yourkarma.com/

Product reviews:

If you're skeptical, as New York resident I can tell you that it's difficult to go more than 5 blocks without encountering some type of coffee shop or Starbucks that offers free wifi to its patrons.


If you are staying in Manhattan you should have no problem. All the Starbucks have free wifi also the new free wifi booths around the city. They are like phone booths but you get free wifi. Free Wifi LyncNYC you have a lot of options. I live in Manhattan and work remotely never had issues finding wifi. Even some of the train stations have wifi


I would not buy a 4G/LTE hotspot, as your hotel will likely have free WiFi. Starbucks has free WiFi through Google (and its fast), and are every few blocks. Also, there are often free hotspots for Comcast and Time Warner subscribers called CableWIFI and TWC that broadcast from any customer's wireless router. All you need is the subscriber login for Comcast or Time Warner, assuming you have a friend anywhere in the nation who uses those services.

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    I would not let a friend use my log-in for internet, not as I will be responsible for what is put on internet on that log-in.
    – Willeke
    Commented Dec 27, 2016 at 22:43

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