Mpls’ airport offers free WiFi… with a few catches

Travelers going through Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport apparently have a collective wish list, because the folks at the Metropolitan Airports Commission say they’ve checked it, and free WiFi has been at the top for some time. So now, they’re granting that wish. Through a new agreement with a company called Advanced Wireless Group, wireless Internet service is now free.

But you have to put up with a few hurdles. How large or small they are depends on your tolerance for such things.

You’ve got to watch a commercial or take a survey before the new MSP-WiFi will allow you to roam the web freely. And, the free access lasts 45 minutes. A helpful timer lets travelers know how long they have left.

Once 45 minutes are up, you’ve got to watch another ad or take another survey. The cycle may play out indefinitely. There’s no word yet on who the advertisers will be or what the surveys will, well, survey. The commission didn’t provide specifics on bandwidth and speed of the free service, although in a release officials say it should “satisfy the average user’s needs.”

If you want to skip the ads and have access that’s four times as fast, you can pay $2.95 for 24 hours. The commission says it used to cost up to $7.95.

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