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Electronics & Photo

Best Wifi for Airbnb

By  Enda McLarnon

Thanks for taking your time to read our information on the best Wifi for an Airbnb. The vast majority of guests do expect to be able to use their Smartphones, tablets such as iPads or laptops when they are at your premises.

There are many options for providing this so anyone in almost any location can get some form of Wifi set up pretty quickly, and usually without too much hassle. We will explain all of the options below starting with the most popular and easiest methods.

airbnb wifi options

What is Wifi?

Don't worry, we are not going to get over technical about this, but it is really useful to understand the principle behind this and having this basic knowledge will make your choice so much easier.

Wifi stands for "Wireless Fidelity" and it sends radio frequencies between devices.

In most homes throughout the UK, the owner of the home will have a Broadband connection. The broadband service is connected to a router (modem) which is quite literally a box that plugs into the main's electricity and the telephone network.

You can connect any device directly to that modem using a cable known as an "Ethernet cable." This is known as a fixed connection.

As long as the modem is wireless, you can also connect a device through what is called a "Wifi" connection. This is known as a wireless connection.

Pairing Devices to a Wifi Connection

There are lots of different devices such as Smartphones, iPads, tablets, laptops, printers etc. As long as they have a wireless option, and almost all do, they can then connect to any modem as long as they know the password of that modem/router.

As an example when I connect my mobile phone to my home modem, I go to settings on my phone, then Connections and then Wifi. My phone searches for the home broadband modem, and will display a list of possible Wifi connections. I then select my home broadband connection, and I will then be prompted for a password.

That password is shown on the side of the modem, and once that is typed in, then the connection can be made.

Is that type of Wifi Connection OK for an Airbnb

It will work fine but it is not ideal for a number of reasons. If you just want to keep it really simple, then the system explained above will work fine. As long as the Wifi signal is string in the Airbnb accommodation, it is easy to connect using the method explained above.

However, there are drawbacks, and the main one is security of your Internet connection, and what customers may use the connection for. That does involve a level of risk as we shall explain.

Your broadband connection has what is called a bandwidth, and sharing that connection with guests will slow down the Internet access. In addition to that the more devices and users you have on your network, the more potential security breaches you introduce.

Guests would also have access to other wireless items on your network such as a wireless printer etc.

It is a much better idea to set up a guest network, which isn't as hard as many people think.

Setting Up a Guest Wifi Connection

You need to create a "guest network." That means any resources you have on your own network can never be accessed by a guest, and that is always a very good thing.

On the side or bottom of your router/modem you will find an "IP address." It will look something like 192.168.2.5 as an example. Open a browser on your computer and type that IP address into the browser. (On a Windows PC or laptop you can also open the command prompt (cmd) and then type ipconfig, and your modem address is the Default Gateway address.

You now need the Admin and password which you should have or be able to get from your broadband provider. Once you get access then search for Wireless Settings or Guest Network setting.

You can then name the guest network. Now this next part can get a little bit complicated, but it depends on the router/modem that you have. Some routers are dual band. They create two Wifi networks which are a 2.4Ghz band and a 5Ghz band.

If your router is that type, then simply create a guest network for each band. If you prefer, you can simply create one band guest network for guests.

Finally make sure that you set WPA2 security to any guest networks and then create a strong password.

When your guests arrive, you can then give them the guest network name and the password.

Guest Wifi Terms & Conditions

We would also recommend having terms and conditions of use for your Airbnb Wifi connection. This can be done as part of the booking process, sent using email, or as a print out in the room.

It covers issues such as Extent of the Service, Your Use of the Service, Criminal Activity, Our Use of your information and other Terms. There are plenty of templates available, so worth a quick search to find those and adapt them to your needs.

Guest Wifi Poor Signal

As we mentioned expectations are high from guests when it comes to Wifi access. They expect it to be there an they also expect it to be very good. We understand that it isn't always like that, but if that is the case, it will be mentioned on reviews over and over again.

We have listed below a number of options to make your Wifi as good as it can be.

Option 1 -  Get a Separate Broadband Connection

A typical broadband connection costs about £40 a month, and this can be used exclusively for your guests. That way it has no impact on your own broadband, and guests get a much stronger signal.

Two guests both using their mobile phones, and a couple of kids on YouTube, watching films or gaming will soon eat up any broadband bandwidth. A separate connection will make for a much better experience.

Make sure to get an "unlimited data broadband" as you don't want to risk excess charges. You should also tell the phone company to install the new modem in the guest bedroom.

 There is likely to be a one-off installation charge and an ongoing monthly cost to this, so just be aware of that.

Option 2 -  Get a Wifi Extender or Booster

This type of booster easily expand wireless coverage to unreachable or hard-to-wire areas at a push of range extender button.

They work with any WiFi router or wireless access point.

They simply take your existing Wifi signal, and then boost it in another area such as the guest bedroom.

As you can see this is not an expensive solution and it is a one time spend.

These are also very simple to set up.

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Option 3 -  Get a Wifi Mesh System

These can be really useful and are normally used in larger homes, or homes with a steel beam structure

They can cover up to around 5,000 square feet

When using this type of mesh system you don't need Wi-Fi boosters or extenders and they can keep up to 100+ devices connected at the same time

It is a more expensive option than a simple extender but it is also a more powerful and permanent solution.

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Option 4 -  Get an Access Point Installed

This is yet another solution, and it is a more permanent solution as well.

It can be used to turn an existing wired connection into a wireless network, allowing you to connect wireless devices.

It also expands coverage and transmits an existing wireless signal into previously unreachable areas.

These are very fast transmission and allow for activity such as HD streaming, online gaming and large files downloading.

This is a hassle free way to set up secure guest network. Just plug it in when the guests arrive and unplug it when they go.

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Option 5 -  Move the Existing Router

When most broadband lines are installed, most phone engineers will put them in the front hall, or into the living room close to the TV. It means they don't have to run a lot of cable through your home.

However if you room is a good distance from your router, the signal gets weaker, and in some cases just will not reach. You could run an extension socket from the existing point to a different or more central location, and then relocate the modem.

That can really help improve the signal throughout the building.

Option 6 -  Get a Business Hotspot Gateway

These work with any wireless access point

The difference with one of these is that you can include special offers and promote your website

You can also fully control Internet access to prevent guests abusing the service

You can also charge using vouchers, or give free access where the customer has to read a disclaimer

This can also be customised with your company logo and you can capture email addresses for future marketing.

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Can't get Broadband or really Poor Broadband

The majority of homes and businesses in the UK now have access to some type of broadband. In rural areas, there are still some issues with around 0.5% of the population in the UK, still unable to get a satisfactory service.

One possible alternative is to use a mobile broadband connection for your Wifi access. These will only work if you are able to get a strong mobile connection where your Airbnb is located.

Most mobile networks use the 4G network to transmit their data and allow user to make and receive phone calls and texts.

With one of these you can insert a mobile SIM card, and this device tis a 4G Wifi router. Some people use these in holiday homes and caravans.

This Huawei router is unlocked, so you can use a SIM card from any network. You will of course need to pay monthly for a SIM card that will give you an amount of data. That can get expensive, so don't be afraid to ring around and see what offers are available.

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Hopefully we have been able to help in some way to suggest a range of alternatives for the best Wifi for an Airbnb. There are quite a few options available on the market.

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