AwardWallet receives compensation from advertising partners for links on the blog. The opinions expressed here are our own and have not been reviewed, provided, or approved by any bank advertiser. Here's our complete list of Advertisers.

The Italian government is making things easier through an app, Wi-Fi Italia, that gives tourists internet access across the country. The app, which is available on Android and iOS, gives users access to 28,000 Wi-Fi hotspots across the country. This concept is brilliant, and while it isn't specifically tied to tourists, that is how it is being marketed, which is in itself makes perfect sense.

Boat on Canal

Who knows how fast the networks will be, but at a start, we can't complain about free. With significant coverage in tourist destinations, we can hope connectivity will be good, but can safely assume it won't be the fastest.

Wi-Fi Italia Map

Over the course of the next year, coverage is going to be expanded to reach some of the less well-traveled corners of the country. The government aims ultimately to have almost complete coverage of the country.

Overall

Consistent access to the internet has become a requirement for a majority of western society. Many airlines offer Wi-Fi on board, either paid or complimentary like Norwegian. You can even get Wi-Fi for as little as $10 per month across several airlines’ planes. But the problem is always when you reach your destination and have to switch to expensive data plan or find a place with free Wi-Fi, although you can rent a mobile hotspot at several airports around the world. Hopefully other governments with a thriving tourism industry will take note of what Italy is doing and start implementing their own Wi-Fi networks. Connectivity is no longer a luxury, but rather a necessity.

Source: God Save The Points

Italy Offering Free Wi-Fi for Tourists Across the Country
5 (100%) 7 votes
AwardWallet Tip of The Day
Did you know that for each airline within one of the global alliances you can view the balances across all carriers in this alliance? Click the alliance icon in the list of accounts next to any airline in an alliance to see the details.
Show me how

The comments on this page are not provided, reviewed, or otherwise approved by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Comments

  • angelo fonseca says:

    Excellent news. Governments need to make life easier for tourists. They must understand that tourism is something important in the country’s economy.

    • yes but governments wants you to spend money in their country , the more people spend on wifi they less they spend exploring a country/island

  • Wow! This is in comparable scale with the portable 3G/4G cell phones Hong Kong & Macau have been offering to their hotel guests. Very useful.

  • I wonder how this will work, like who will fund and maintain the hotspots.

    I ask, because Comcast does this here in the states. The way they pulled it off, is to turn every subscribers router into a hotspot that also broadcasts a unsecured Comcast SSID.

    Problem is, it made people so angry that they enabled the option to disable that functionality which most people did and limited the original scope of Comcast’s planned coverage.

    It will be interesting to see how they pull this off. I would hate for it to start out with a bang, and then end up crippled and not as useful as it could be.

  • This is a great idea. This will be a lot easier than finding a seat in a crowded Starbucks.

  • Great news! This is especially useful when using GPS maps on mobile devices to locate attractions

  • How do they know who is a tourist and who is not? 😉

  • I am a little concerned about the security and safety of this wifi. Perhaps the app will provide safety but I have had information taken from what I believe was use of public wif in Italy. I sincerenly hope this does not go down that road.

    • You should be cautious of any wifi network that you do not personally control, whether it is completely open or password-protected like in a hotel or restaurant.

      Any information you transact over HTTPS in your devices web browser should be secure, but you need to be on guard against any certificate errors and apps with vulnerabilities that allow non-secure code to be injected.

      Going through a trustworthy VPN can be worth the cost.

  • It would be great if other countries follow suit. I was recently in China and the internet was spotty and inconsistent – even in hotels.

  • Very useful. I just arrived in a new city and was easily able to find my way to the hotel on public transport due to the internet. Great to have that ability in other countries. I haven’t spent much time in Italy but it’s nice to know it would be easy to navigate the system if there was accessible wifi.

    • Using the internet on your phone to find your way around and working out public transport is exactly the sort of thing that free WIFI will help tourists the most.

      That is exactly what I used my phone for when I was in Italy recently, although I downloaded google maps for the city before I arrived and used my roaming data allowance for the public transport app.

  • great news! hopefully they don’t capture our usage data though…

  • nice thing! very useful

  • Awesome, in exchange for monitoring you.

  • Jacqueline parsons says:

    Good news for travellers in Italy. Not everyone has international roaming packages so i can see this being very welcomed, great iniative by the government.

  • Hopefully all other countries will follow suit with this. It’s such a pain arriving in a country not to find your provider has a very good reception there or the roaming charges so this is a great step forward for tourism.

  • Cool, as long as it doesn’t turn a bunch of tourists into cell phone zombies.

    Tough enough to wander through Rome without every person buried in their phone.

  • Sounds like it might be a good idea 🙂

  • Fantastic. Hopefully more countries will follow this example.

  • this is something that every country should do to increase tourism

  • Great idea for maps, etc.

    Be very careful with security of anything more important as the information passing through these public networks can be read by anybody with the right gadgets.

  • This is awesome. Better connectivity is always appreciated.

  • Very nice! How will it work – I’ll be able to register with my phone number or email?

  • not bad…i’d be concerned about security, though

  • Wow, nice move!

  • This is grea! Will help encourage tourism by making it easier to plan and get around.

  • This pushes Italy up on my list. If I can set up my connection once and forget about it, I’m going to be a happy camper (at the Hilton, of course). Logging in to a variety of hotspots and giving away my info can lead to a lot of unsubscribe efforts once I’m home. This is a nice way to avoid that issue.

  • Somebody should put up a website or list of countries that are tourist friendly and offer free wifi.

  • As I’m Italian this it’s a good news.
    I haven’t any subscription to surf the internet and so I use only free Wi-Fi.
    And this move make tourists happy while visiting Italy.

  • Sweet, glad to see Italy doing this hopefully other countries will do so as well.

  • That’s kind of awesome…Was juts in Bratislava, and there was free public WiFi in the city center there as well.

  • This could be very useful for finding attractions, restaurants, or your hotel. Interested to see how this works out.

  • Sofia DiClemente says:

    and we just returned from Italy !!! Rats… we had trouble connecting to the airport wifi too, so this would have been very convenient had we known !!!!!

  • Luciana DiClemente says:

    And we just returned from Italy !!!!! Wish we knew this, for the free airport wifi never worked. This is great info.

  • More places should do this!

  • This is a great idea! I use T-mobile so I can get extra coverage when I travel international, however, if I don’t have to do one extra step before I go on a trip, that’s always nice. I have enough to remember for me, my husbands and two kids. Who would have thought they couldn’t remember all the things they need to bring with them?! My husband not as much but my kids forgot underwear?! I mean really?! Ugh. So yeay Italy!

  • This is awesome if it works. In the past I had data plan or pop into McDonald’s for free wifi. Having been to Italia 10+ times I always skeptical if something government run can actually work. South of Roma is still controlled by organized crime and they don’t like things being free. I will believe it when I see free wifi in Sicily or Sardinia. Fingers crossed. Viva l’Italia

  • I thought they hated their tourists!

  • This is very exciting idea. I hope it works. Looking forward to hot spots in public squares

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

**You may receive 5 bonus AAdvantage miles for leaving a comment (Details/FAQ)