Free WIFI in Calgary
The cost of mobile data in Canada is atrocious, and it doesn’t appear to be getting any better soon. There are free WIFI locations all over Calgary and I thought it wouldn’t be a bad idea to create a list of them. Who knows when it might come in handy? You might need to upload a video, install some giant app, study, download a TV show or harass people over twitter. Doing that over your mobile data could result in a ton of extra charges if you go beyond your monthly limit, so tapping into one of the many available free WIFI in Calgary hotspots is a great idea.
Here are 10 places to use free WIFI in Calgary
The best WIFI is free WIFI. If you can think of anything else to add to this list, drop in a comment with it below.
1 – City of Calgary Locations
The City of Calgary has partnered up with Shaw to offer free WIFI in Calgary at various City locations, making it the easiest to access. Look for “Shaw Guest“. Free WIFI is available at:
- All LRT train stations.
- Most city owned pools, skating arenas, golf courses.
- Leisure Centres.
- Olympic Plaza, Devonian Gardens, Shaw Millennium Park, the Municipal Building customer service areas.
You’ll get to use 500mb of free data per month using Shaw Open. See all the info here: http://www.calgary.ca/cfod/it/Pages/Public-WiFi.aspx
2 – Most grocery stores, most restaurants, including McDonalds and Tim Hortons
Offering free WIFI to customers shopping for groceries is a no-brainer. Safeway and Calgary Co-op both do, even Kay’s on 6th ave does. Not all will, but most do.
Even if you don’t eat at McDonads or Tim Hortons, you can totally just stand outside tapping into that beautiful internet juice, but it would be better to just go inside and grab a coffee. In most cases other fast food places will too offer free public WIFI like A&W, Burger King and KFC. If you’re in a pinch, look for one of those. In addition to fast food joints, pretty much every restaurant with a clue has WIFI you can use for free, however you’ll most likely need to use a password to access it. It might be written on their menu, their website, or you have to ask the staff. Due to this, restaurant WIFI is pretty fast and more reliable.
3 – Coffee Shops and Cafes
Starbucks may have the best coffee shop free WIFI in Calgary. It’s in their best interest to keep you in the seat, so the WIFI is free, unlimited, and without time limits. Other coffee shops in Calgary will have free WIFI too, such as Higher Ground, Analog coffee, Rosso Coffee Roasters, Phil & Sebastians, Good Earth, Oolong Tea House, Boxcar board game cafe, to name a few. If you need somewhere 24hrs, Denny’s, Humpty’s and the Blackfoot Diner are open 24hrs and have free WIFI in Calgary.
Sometimes doing nothing but sipping coffee and catching up on social media is the bestttt.
Here is a cafe WIFI finder http://www.wificafespots.com/wifi/city/CA-AB-Calgary
4 – Kids parks/play places/cafes
These are really only applicable to parents. If you don’t have kids, there exists several businesses out there that provide kids with something to do. Jungle gyms, play equipment, lots of toys, that sort of thing. Each one will have free WIFI for parents to sit and keep an eye on their kids running amok. The kid gets to burn off energy and have a great time, you get food and AC and WIFI. Win win.
http://treehouseplay.com is a good one for older kids. Solid free WIFI throughout.
One we particularly enjoyed was called Coffee and Scream. http://www.coffeeandscream.ca. Children from ages 6 months to 6 years can run around, climb on things, use those big play structures with other kids of similar ages, race around. The play area has a window to their cafe so you can order food, and they have a specific food for younger kids. This place was such a life saver while mini was growing out of the toddler stage. Free reliable WIFI.
5 – Public Libraries
All of the Calgary Public Libraries have free WIFI, however you will need a library card to access it. Library cards are free too! Not only that, with your free Calgary Public Library card, you’ll get free unlimited access to Lynda.com! That is so cool. On top of free internets, the libraries have Chromebook laptops you can borrow and use in the library for free. Catch all the details here: https://calgarylibrary.ca/computers/.
6 – Calgary Breweries!
Every brewery in Calgary should have free WIFI. If they don’t, they crazy mang. I’m not saying this because I’m greedy and demand free WIFI, it just makes good business sense to offer it to customers. We live in the age of Instagram and SnapChat don’t forget. Tool Shed, Dandy, Banded Peak, Village, Annex, Trolley 5, Last Best all have free WIFI. You get to sit there and not only internet as much as you please for free, you can do it while drinking craft beer. Some of the breweries have food and patios, too.
The LastBest patio is great.
7 – Free WIFI in Calgary Apps
Shaw and Telus have their own apps made to specifically track down their free WIFI hotspots, in Calgary and all over their networks. These maps not only can help you out in a bind, but if you’re planning on going somewhere and might want to check for free WIFI, they’ll really come in handy. Here’s a third party site that has a database of free WIFI points https://wifispc.com/canada/alberta/calgary.html.
There are also generic “Free WIFI finder” apps on the Android and Apple markets that generally do a good job of tracking them down. Go search, install some.
Here are the Shaw and Telus free WIFI apps, they’ll be quite helpful:
8 – Shopping Malls
Not only do most shopping malls offer some kind of free public internet, a lot of the stores inside the malls do too. They’re usually named something that makes sense. Core Shopping centre offers free WIFI and theirs is named “CORE Free WiFi”.
9 – The Calgary International Airport
This one might be a little obvious, and not exactly as helpful location, but the Calgary International Airport offers free WIFI, and they have since 2008. The access to it is apparently limited to 240 minutes, so not something you’ll be able to spend all day on. Handy if you’re waiting for a flight though. Maybe go hunt some Pokemon? Info here. In addition, a lot of hotels will also offer complimentary WIFI to guests or people visiting the lounge.
10 – Unsecured residential WIFI
We’ve all used these at some point, just walking down the street finding random WIFI networks that aren’t secured (needs a password), free internets! They can be open for various reasons, but most commonly it’s people just not knowing what they’re doing when setting up a router. They can of course also be left open on purpose. For example, someone who knows what they’re doing an open up a network and allow people to connect to it, then steal all their contacts/passwords/info if you login to it. When you connect to someone elses network, this is a risk you take. This goes for any free WIFI. You’ll probably be fine, but, you never know.
Remember not to do anything illegal over free WIFI, everything can be tracked down by the cyber police.
Crackmacs are a team of Calgary based bloggers, writing about and sharing food, drinks, things to do, events, contests, charities, travel/tourism, parenting, politics, lifestyle and all kinds of other content.