Sometimes a public wireless network will require you to validate your data locally before you can access the Internet. This usually happens through a popup, but sometimes the login form never appears.
Here are some tricks you can use to force the login screen to appear if it isn’t.
Try to access websites or router logins
Some networks will leave you at the login page every time you try to access any website. The first thing to do is simply open a browser and try to access something, like a simple web search or a trusted website (maybe howtogeek.com).
For best results, open a private (incognito) browsing window and access a non-HTTPS website, such as nonhttps.com. This will prevent your browser from using cached DNS information to access a known site, which may trigger the web login page.
You can also try using known “router login” addresses like 192.168.1.1/192.168.0.1, 10.0.0.1 and localhost. Third party DNS servers such as 188.8.131.52 (Google) and 184.108.40.206 (Cloudflare) are also known to work.
Disable alternate DNS
Using an alternate DNS server is a solid way to speed up browsing, but it can also prevent public login pages from appearing. To stop using an alternate DNS server, just follow the steps you used to set it up in the first place.
When you’re done, don’t forget to set it up again so you can reap the benefits.
RELATED: Why you shouldn’t use your ISP’s default DNS server
Try restarting your device
If you’ve tried everything and nothing seems to work, it may be worth trying to restart your device. Before you do this, you might want to try enabling Airplane Mode or disabling Wi-Fi, but a hard reset is still one of the best ways to fix a lot of glitches.
Using unsecured networks? Invest in a VPN
You should avoid using public Wi-Fi networks for security reasons, as criminals can use them to spy on your browsing activity and put your device at risk. The best solution is to use a secure network or create a personal hotspot with your iPhone or Android device when you’re away from home.
If public Wi-Fi is your only option, get a VPN and encrypt your browsing activity for peace of mind.