According to a survey carried out by Hoteles.com, the service most valued by customers when choosing a hotel is free wifi.
Critical for families traveling with children (by which I mean teens), who all seem to be permanently on Facebook, updating their statuses or telling their friends what they have just had for breakfast etc the wifi question can be a deal breaker - and most importantly for the parents, whether its FREE! Curious to know what the hotels in Benidorm offer, I spent yesterday afternoon driving around and speaking to the reception staff at the ones which the Brits tend to favour.
The biggest hotel chain in Benidorm, Servigroup - who have 9 hotels and the Medplaya.com group - who have 3 hotels come out top - they offer FREE wifi access at all their hotels - when checking in they hand you the password code for access.
Starting at the top of the Rincon de Loix we have the Hotel Levante Club - they do offer free wifi (but remember this is an adult only hotel)
|Wifi only available in the Club Rooms|
At the Dynastic Hotel you also have to pay for the wifi and they offer both hourly and daily rates. 1 hour is 1 euro; 12 hours is 3 euros; 1 day is 5 euros; 3 days are 10 euros and 7 days are 15 euros. Wifi reception is available in all the bedrooms.
|Sol Pelicanos - the most expensive|
The Flash Hotel next door offer wifi at a charge and the signal is available in all the bedrooms. He thought it was a strange question when I asked that, but after the Sol Pelicanos thought Id better. The charges are as follow - 2 hours are 3.5 euro; 6 hours are 6.50 euro and 1 week is 19.50 euro.
The Riviera Hotel offer FREE wifi to guests and it is available in your bedroom.
The Ambassador I & II offer FREE wifi which is available and reaches all the bedrooms - the Ambassador I has just had an amazing new reception area open... it looks like a scene from space, very unusual.
Hotel Presidente offer FREE wifi but it is only accessible in the communal areas downstairs, such as the reception and bar areas. The signal does NOT reach into the bedrooms, although the receptionist did say that some of bedrooms on the lower floors may get it intermittently.
Hotel Helios, the hotel nearest to the Wednesday & Sunday outdoor market also offer FREE wifi but like the Presidente, the reception only reaches the communal areas and NOT into the bedrooms.
Where FREE wifi is on offer, access is via a password which you pick up on checking in at the hotel.
Its certainly worth taking into consideration if you are taking iPods, iPads and any other tablets which require wifi as it can add a fair amount onto your bill.
But a word of caution, Wifi hotspots are often unprotected and unencrypted, which means anyone nearby can pick up the same signals and read you information. It is best to avoid accessing confidential data such as bank accounts in public wifi zones. Most importantly, ensure that your firewall and anti-virus software are updated before going on holiday. There are many free wifi hotspots around Benidorm - especially in bars and cafes, but check the correct network name with the staff to avoid logging onto an "evil twin" - fake hotspots set up by scammers.
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