Wi-Fi Woes

The odd things that hotels get up to regarding Internet access continue to fascinate me. This particular Marriott uses the Wayport system which is not quite universal enough for it to be worthwhile buying a membership in. The day rate is $15, which is extortionate, but you can buy an 8-day pass for $35. Even though I’m only here for 6 nights, it is a good deal, but…

…here’s the rub. There are many wi-fi points throughout the hotel, and a pass bought on one will not work on another. I tried to fake it by connecting in my room and wandering around with the computer online, but after a few minutes in the lobby the system noticed that I was closer to a different access point and asked me to buy a new pass.

This may seem a very odd thing to do, but having talked to Chrissie Mains I now know why. The hotel has two separate wi-fi rates – a cheap one for ordinary guests, and a pay-through-the-nose one for business customers. The business rates only apply in the function space. And they can only do that if each separate access point bills separately.

Gary Wolfe tells me that he’s been able to connect OK throughout much of the hotel, and apparently when Charles Brown had the same problem as me he chewed out Wayport’s tech support and they fixed it for him. I may do that too, but first I have work to do, which means I’m stuck in my room for a few hours.