Redmond, Washington, U.S. – 30 January 2015 – Hotelwifitest.com reveals: This report focuses on the geographical aspects of hotel WiFi. Two characteristics of hotel WiFi are considered: the quality of the WiFi and whether in-room WiFi is free. WiFi Quality is expressed by the percentage of hotels that offer adequate WiFi quality in a given geographical area. This type of ranking is easy to understand, and it makes perfect sense from a practical standpoint. For most travelers, having super-fast and consistently stable WiFi is a great bonus, but their first priority is ensuring that basic quality expectations for Internet access are met.
Also, this is a more robust approach than measuring the average speed, as such calculations can be misleading because of a few of hotels that have extremely fast WiFi and many hotels with horrible WiFi. The median speed is a bit better for this purpose than the average speed, but it can still give misleading expectations.
In this report, a hotel judged as having adequate WiFi must provide an expected download speed of at least 3 Mbps (the Netflix recommendation for SD-quality streaming) and an upload speed of 500 kbps (the Skype recommendation for high-quality non-HD video calling).
The Free WiFi percentage is calculated as a ratio of hotels that offer free in-room WiFi to all hotels for which the WiFi price structure and availability is known. In our view, hotel WiFi is a synonym for in-room WiFi; therefore, hotels that offer free WiFi only in public areas are not counted as hotels with free WiFi.
At the very top level, we compare hotel WiFi in the United States, Asia, and Europe. Other parts of the world don’t have enough tests recorded to be included in this comparison. We chose the United States instead of North America, because the number of tested hotels in the other countries on the continent is negligible compared with the United States, and including them could create the wrong perception for some countries.
- In Europe, it is 33% more likely that a hotel has adequate WiFi than in the United States; but in the United States, it is 14% more likely that a hotel will offer free in-room WiFi.
- Asia is at the top when it comes to hotel WiFi quality (49.5%), but at the bottom for the percentage of hotels offering free in-room WiFi (61.2%).
For the ranking by country, we took the 50 most-tested countries and sorted them by WiFi quality. This means that a lot of countries are not on the list, because they don’t have enough tested hotels—not because of the poor quality of hotel WiFi. For example, Hungary being 10th out of 50 means that it is in the 81st percentile: 19% of all countries have better hotel WiFi, and 81% of them have worse hotel WiFi. Therefore, if we took more than 50 countries for our ranking, more than 9 countries could have better hotel WiFi than Hungary, but some of them are just not tested well enough to be ranked in this report.
- The United States is only in the 21st percentile for WiFi quality; 79% of countries have better hotel WiFi.
- South Korea is the leader in hotel WiFi quality (92%) by a healthy margin in 7.1 percentage points to the second best country (Japan).
For the city ranking, we took the 50 most-tested cities worldwide and sorted them by WiFi quality. This means that a lot of cities are not on the list, because they don’t have enough tested hotels — not because of the poor quality of the hotel WiFi. For example, the 30th place result for Madrid out of 50 means that it is in the 31st percentile: 59% of all cities have better hotel WiFi, and 31% of them have worse hotel WiFi. Therefore, if we used more than 50 cities for our ranking, more than 29 cities could have better hotel WiFi than Madrid. However, some of them are just not tested well enough to be ranked in this report.
- Even though Sweden is only #7 in the country ranking, Stockholm is #1 in terms of WiFi quality and is one of the leaders in terms of the percentage of hotels providing free in-room WiFi (89.5%).
- Albufeira, Portugal, is by bar the worst city for high-quality hotel WiFi (8.8%), almost 14 percentage points lower than the next-worst city (Atlanta, United States).