If you’re fortunate to live in a city or town with free Wifi available at coffeeshops, restaurants, the public library, or elsewhere, count yourself lucky. I haven’t found any free WiFi in New Zealand. This menu of restaurant Wifi pricing in Rotorua on the North Island is fairly representative of what I’ve seen other places, including my hotel.

SiteWifi - Wireless Internet Solutions

Note that in addition to paying for Internet access by the hour, users are also LIMITED in the quantity of file transfers which are permitted. Since I have a TON of photos and videos to upload to my New Zealand Flickr collection today, this kind of commercial Wifi offer is essentially useless to me. Thankfully, earlier this week I discovered the Cybershed Internet Cafe here in Rotorua, which does not have metered Internet use restrictions. They charge a flat $5 NZ per hour for wired access when you bring your own laptop. With the current exchange rate, that’s about $3 US. A real bargain!

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2 Responses to Metered, commercial WiFi common in New Zealand

  1. New Zealand hotels & motels are beginning to realise that sometimes free Wifi is what will bring a customer to their business – it’s a lot harder to find places with free wifi – every hotel in Wellington i’ve ever stayed at charged like a wounded bull for wifi – a total reverse of my experience in the USA.

  2. […] per minute for Wifi access?! Ouch! That might be a good deal in a country like New Zealand (where public WiFi seems pretty costly,) but here in the U.S. it seems pretty […]

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