September 28, 2023
Looking for ways to get WiFi in your car for free? Here are six solutions to try, including portable hotspot devices, public WiFi, personal hotspots, WiFi antennas and extenders, free trials, and WiFi apps. Choose the option that works best for you and stay connected on the road!

How to Get WiFi in Your Car for Free

Picture this: you’re driving down the highway, headed to a new destination, but you can’t access Google Maps to guide you because your phone has no internet connection. Or maybe you’re going on a long road trip, and you need something to pass the time, but you didn’t bring any DVDs or games because you assumed you’d have WiFi in the car. Either way, not having wifi in your car can be a big inconvenience. Fortunately, there are several ways to get wifi in your car for free. In this article, we’ll explore those solutions and give you tips on how to make the most of them.

Use a Portable WiFi Hotspot Device

A portable WiFi hotspot device is a small, battery-operated gadget that allows you to connect to the internet using cellular data. These hotspots are usually offered by cellphone carriers, and they create a wireless network that you can connect to with your phone, tablet, or laptop. Portable WiFi hotspots have several benefits and drawbacks:

  • Benefits: They provide a reliable, secure connection, and you don’t have to rely on finding public WiFi hotspots. They’re also portable, so you can take them with you wherever you go.
  • Drawbacks: They can be expensive, and you have to pay a monthly fee for the data plan. Additionally, you have to remember to charge the device regularly.

If you want to try using a portable WiFi hotspot device, here are a few examples:

  • Verizon Jetpack MiFi 8800L: This device costs $199.99 and requires a monthly data plan. It can connect up to 15 devices at once.
  • T-Mobile Alcatel Linkzone: This device costs $79.99 and requires a monthly data plan. It can connect up to 15 devices at once.
  • Sprint Pocket WiFi: This device costs $72 and requires a monthly data plan. It can connect up to 10 devices at once.

Connect to Public WiFi

If you’re looking for a free way to get WiFi in your car, public WiFi hotspots are your best bet. Many restaurants, cafes, libraries, and other public places offer free WiFi to customers and visitors. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when using public WiFi:

  • Availability: Public WiFi hotspots are not available everywhere, especially in rural areas. You may have to plan your route around WiFi hotspots if you want to stay connected.
  • Finding hotspots: You can use apps like WiFi Map or Wi-Fi Finder to locate hotspots near you.
  • Security: Public WiFi hotspots can be less secure than private WiFi networks, so you should avoid accessing sensitive information (like online banking) while connected to them.
  • Signal strength: Some public WiFi hotspots have weak signals, which can make it difficult to connect or stay connected.

Use Your Phone’s Personal Hotspot

If you have a smartphone with a data plan, you can use it as a personal hotspot to create a WiFi network in your car. Here’s how to set it up:

  1. Go to your phone’s settings and look for the “Personal Hotspot” option.
  2. Turn on the Personal Hotspot feature.
  3. Connect your phone to your car’s audio system via Bluetooth or auxiliary cable.
  4. Connect your other devices to the Personal Hotspot network using the WiFi password provided.

Keep in mind that using your phone as a hotspot will use data from your data plan, so you should monitor your usage and avoid accessing data-heavy sites or apps. It can also drain your phone’s battery quickly, so make sure to keep your phone charged.

Install a WiFi Antenna or Extender in Your Car

A WiFi antenna or extender is a piece of hardware that boosts the WiFi signal in your car. This can be useful if you’re having trouble connecting to other WiFi networks. Here are a few benefits and drawbacks of WiFi antennas and extenders:

  • Benefits: They can improve signal strength and give you a more reliable connection. They’re also affordable and easy to install.
  • Drawbacks: They can’t create a WiFi network on their own, so you’ll still need another source of WiFi. They can also look bulky if not installed properly.

If you want to try installing a WiFi antenna or extender in your car, here are a few examples:

  • Alfa WiFi Camp Pro 2: This kit costs around $170 and includes an outdoor WiFi antenna and an indoor booster. It’s ideal for camping and RV trips.
  • BrosTrend WiFi Range Extender: This small device costs around $30 and can be plugged into a car’s cigarette lighter port. It can extend the range of an existing WiFi network.
  • Netgear AC1900 WiFi Mesh Extender: This powerful extender costs around $130 and can cover a large area. It needs to be connected to an existing WiFi network to work.

Use Free WiFi Trials

Some WiFi providers offer free trials to new customers. These trials usually last a week or two and can give you access to a high-speed WiFi network without having to pay anything. However, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Finding trials: You can search for WiFi trials on Google or sign up for email newsletters from providers like Xfinity or AT&T.
  • Cancellation: Some trials automatically charge your credit card if you don’t cancel before the trial ends. Make sure to read the fine print before signing up.
  • Short trial period: Trials usually last for a limited time, so they may not be ideal for long road trips.

Use Free Wi-Fi Apps

There are several apps available that can help you locate free WiFi hotspots near you. Here are a few examples:

  • Free WiFi Map: This app has over 100 million hotspots listed and lets you filter by location, provider, and type of venue.
  • WiFi Finder: This app has over 650,000 hotspots listed and has a feature that helps you save your favorite hotspots for future use.
  • Instabridge: This app has over 4 million hotspots listed and lets you connect to open networks with one click.

Keep in mind that these apps rely on user input, so their accuracy is not guaranteed. You should also make sure to download them before you hit the road, since you may not have internet access while driving.


As you can see, there are several ways to get WiFi in your car for free. Whether you’re using a hotspot device, public WiFi, your phone’s hotspot feature, a WiFi antenna or extender, free trials, or WiFi apps, you’ll want to keep safety and data usage in mind while on the road. Additionally, you may need to try a combination of these solutions to find what works best for you. Hopefully, this article has given you the information you need to stay connected on your next road trip.

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