Chromecast in a Hotel Room – Four Easy Ways To Get It Working

Chromecast in Hotel Room

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I enjoy using my Chromecast while traveling. But making it work in a hotel room can be a bit challenging because Chromecast needs a direct connection to the internet.  The problem is most hotels require their guests to log in to the internet using a web browser, something the Chromecast doesn’t have!  To make it work in a hotel with web browser login for the internet, you need to set up a secondary hotspot.  I have successfully been able to make my Chromecast work using the following four methods below.  Also, you can use these methods to share a paid hotspot with other devices besides a Google Chromecast.

Before booking my room and leaving for the trip, I do a little prerequisite work.  I check the Hotels WiFi speed and reliability report using Hotel WiFi Test.   I do this because Chromecast does not function very well with an internet speed of 2Mpbs or less. Once you have verified the hotel internet speed, you can use one of the following methods to get it working in your room.

Tip: Test these methods at home first where you are confident the internet is working.

Laptop with Windows 10

By far the easiest way to get a Chromecast working in your hotel room is to use a Windows 10 laptop. Providing your laptop’s built-in WiFi adapter supports it, and most do, Windows 10 has a built-in Hotspot.  Here’s what you do to get a Chromecast working in your hotel room using Windows 10.

  1. Connect your Laptop to the Hotel WiFi and log in from your web browser.
  2. Press the Windows key and the letter I key simultaneously to bring up the Windows settings screen.
  3. From the Windows Settings screen, click on the Network and Internet icon.
  4. Click on Mobile Hotspot on the left-hand side of the screen about a third from the bottom.
    Windows 10 Network Status Dialog
  5.  At the top of the Mobile Hotspot dialog, set the “Share My Internet Connection From” option to Wi-Fi.
  6.  Click on the Edit button to change the network name and password.
  7.  Switch on “Share my internet connection with other Devices” at the top right of the dialog screen.Windows 10 Mobile Hotspot Setup
  8.  Wait a few moments, then connect your Smartphone and Chromecast to your Laptops wireless network.

 

Laptop with Windows 7 or 8

A little more technical, but relatively easy to get you Chromecast working on the hotels WiFi.  First, we need to check if your computer supports creating a virtual WiFi Hotspot.

  1. Connect your Laptop to the Hotel WiFi and log in.
  2. Press the Windows key and the letter S key Simultaneously on your keyboard to bring up Windows search.
  3. Type in “cmd” into the Windows search box and hit enter for the Command Prompt.
  4. Right-click on “Command Prompt” and select Run as Administrator. Very Important!
  5. The Windows Command Screen should now be open. Type in netsh wlan show drivers” then press enter.
  6. If you see the text, “Hosted network supported: Yes”, then your computer can create a virtual hotspot, and you can continue to step 7.Windows Hosted Network Supported
  7. Now type in “netsh wlan set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=(your ssid*) key=(your pass key*)”       *Change (your ssid) and (your pass key) to your own desired ssid and pass key without the parentheses.
  8. To start your virtual hotspot router type in the following netsh wlan start hostednetwork” then hit enter.Windows Hosted Network Start
  9. Now you need to share your internet connection with the virtual hotspot you have just created. Type in the following “ncpa.cpl” and hit enter to bring up your computer’s network connections screen.
  10. Right-click on the network adapter called WiFi (or Ethernet if using a wired connection) then select Properties at the bottom of the pop-up list.Windows Network Connections
  11. Wi-Fi Properties DialogClick on the sharing tab.
  12. Check the box “Allow other network users to connect through this computers network connection.”
  13. From the Home network connection pull down, select the “Local Area Connection *n”. Where “n” is the number of the connection.
  14. Wait a few moments, then connect your Smartphone and Chromecast to your Laptops wireless network.
  15. To close the Command Prompt window, type in “exit” and hit enter.

 

 

 

Use your Smartphone’s WiFi Hotspot Sharing

To use this method, you must be certain your Smartphone is capable of sharing it’s WiFi connection and does not use its Mobile/Celluar data connection. Otherwise, you will have a high data charges on your phone bill.  For example, my Samsung S7 on T-mobile can do this, but my Nexus 6 on the same T-mobile network can not.

Warning: Failure to check this will result in extremely high data charges on your phone bill!

The simplest way to do this is to compare the IP address of your phones shared Hotspot with that of the Hotels WiFi. If both are the same, then you are in good shape.

  1. Connect both your Smartphone and Laptop computer or Tablet to the same WiFi connection.
  2. From your Laptop or Table, check the internet IP address using Whats My IP and write down the IP address.
  3. Start your phone’s hotspot sharing. Do not turn off its connection to WiFi.
  4. Connect your Computer or Table to your Smartphones WiFi connection.
  5. On your Computer or Tablet, check the IP address again using Whats My IP.
  6. If the IP address is the same as in step 2, you can use this method.
    If it’s different, do not use this method as you run the risk of using all your mobile data and receiving a high bill.

When both IP addresses are the same, you can use your Smartphone Shared Hotspot connection for your Chromecast or any other device.  I always double check the IP addresses using the above procedure just to be certain I’m not using mobile data.

 

Use a Travel Router

EdiMax in hand

 

If you don’t want to use your laptop or smartphone, then consider a small travel route that supports WISP, Wireless Internet Service Provider.  The one I recommend is the EdiMax Travel Router available from Amazon and Fry’s Electronics.  Please see the setup instructions here on this website.

 

 

Other Streaming Sticks that work well in Hotels

If you have not bought a Chromecast but you’re shopping for a streaming stick that you can easily use in a hotel, then I recommend spending a little extra and buy the Amazon Fire Stick.  Granted it is Amazon-centric, but when connected to a hotel hotspot it will display a web viewer and an on-screen keyboard.  You log into the hotel’s WiFi with its remote.

Additionally, please read my article Best streaming stick to use while traveling for other options.

Do you have any suggestions, comments or helpful tips you want to share? If so, please leave a comment at the bottom of this article.

Thank you for reading.

 

ColinR.

About Colin Robinson 59 Articles
Colin works for a high technology equipment manufacture as a senior product manager. The majority of his time is spent traveling to visit clients and to teach them in using this hi-tech equipment. He has to keep up with the latest advances in computer technology and trends, and has spent over 30 years in his line of work traveling extensively. He is very passionate about sharing his knowledge and experiences with others. Read more at http://www.worksmartandtravel.com/colin-robinson/

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