Whether you want to send a quick email or are visiting NYC and need to contact loved ones back home, you’ll have no trouble keeping connected in the City. If you’re staying at a hotel, chances are that it has a business center with computers and printers available for guests. International visitors should remember that US power sockets deliver 120 volts at 60 hertz; you may need a converter to use your laptop and phone chargers and any other apparatus here. Besides what’s detailed below, you can find a bit more information in our article here.
Wireless Internet is available throughout NYC, including in many hotels, coffee shops, parks and libraries. At some locations, you have to pay for WiFi. At others—like Starbucks and branches of the New York Public Library—you can surf the Web for free. At the library, you can use your own phone or laptop; use of the on-site computers generally requires an NYPL card, though out-of-towners can request a guest pass for 15 minutes of computer use.
If you’re planning on spending time downtown, visit the Downtown Alliance website for a list of spots with free wireless Internet in Lower Manhattan. And thanks to City initiatives (and in one case, some localized help from Google), a number of neighborhoods, including southwest Chelsea, Harlem and Brooklyn’s DUMBO, are fully connected, as are parts of others—the Flatiron District and Downtown Brooklyn among them.
In an effort to help plugged-in visitors as well as locals, the City has free WiFi hotspots available at the LinkNYC kiosks popping up on sidewalks all over town. In addition to supplying free WiFi from up to 150 feet away, they also provide free phone service within the United States and USB ports to recharge your smartphone. You can also use the built-in tablet to access info on city services, maps and even directions. More than 1,000 Links have been installed so far; another 6,500-plus kiosks are on the way.
Remember to use caution at wireless hotspots. For a good starting point, visit microsoft.com for safety tips that can help safeguard your private data.