If you like this article, tell a friend!      

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Places to SEEFAD

So where's a good place to do a SEEFAD? We've tried a number of places, and here are some of our favorites:

Panera Bread - Free wi-fi, plenty of tables and booths available, nice touch with fireplaces and high backs on seats to give a little privacy. Decent number of plugs. It's large enough to not be crowded, and has a nice ambience. In all but one of the Panera's I've gone to, I've felt welcome to hang out for a while.* Avoid the lunch rush, but other than that a great place to go.

Starbucks - I don't even drink coffee, but when Starbucks offered free Wi-fi when you use a Starbucks gift card, I was hooked. The nice thing about Starbucks is there are so many of them around, and so far about 80% of the ones I went to had the free Wi-fi. It feels a little more crowded than Panera, but they have better selection of drinks. I usually get an iced tea or a hot chocolate (their hot chocolate is actually really good).

Caribou Coffee - All the ones I've been to have free Wi-fi, some with purchase some without. A nice alternative to Starbucks, I'm still trying to find a good non-coffee drink. The ones I've gone to were a little more crowded, but not a bad place to hang out.

Bruegger's Bagels - I know one I went to has free wi-fi for sure, the other one I believe has it too. I don't go too often because there aren't that many, and bagels don't do it for me. But they have a decent ambience and I like a smoked salmon bagel.

I always thought some place should have free wi-fi, charge a few bucks and give you all you can drink and all you can eat snacks during non-lunch hours. I mean how much can you eat between 1:30 and 5 anyway? Maybe charge $3-5, which would be more than the drink I ordered here at Starbucks (albeit not much more).

Any good places you've tried out? Feel free to comment!

*There was one Panera in West Chester, OH where the manager was being really obvious that he didn't want our type there... he was overly fakey cheerful in nudging us out, eventually the wifi turned off because it was near lunchtime. So on the way out I confronted him, and he said it was a "business decision" and wouldn't budge when I brought up that the restaurant was like 40% full and we had bought a few drinks... even told him I was a shareholder and therefore really interested in them making money, but he kept his fake smile and even said have a nice day in an exaggerated tone of voice on the way out. I hope he realizes how much incremental profit he lost by me never going there again.



Adam McFarland said...

Dale - when I first left my job I used http://www.wififreespot.com/ heavily to find places to work. Pretty much every place listed in my town I gave a shot. It was a great way to explore places I never go, plus I found a few great local cafes that offer free wi-fi and actually encourage people to come and work there (unlike Panera...your story is the reason I've never liked working there. I just never feel "welcome" to stay for more than my meal).


Brian Weidner said...

I've actually had good luck with Panera Bread. It's nice that they have the free refills on coffee / soda. $1.75 per day is fairly low for office expense.

I've only been there for 3-4 hour blocks of time. So maybe the key is moving around town to various locations, like Adam suggests.

Library can be a hassle because they usually don't allow cell phone conversations.

Dale said...

@Adam: I actually have had mostly good experience with all of the other Panera Breads I've gone too.. unfortunately that one really spoils it.

@Brian: Welcome! I do like moving around because 1. My attention span isn't long enough to stay more than a couple hours 2. As much as I like working at Panera I don't really like their food that much (I'm not really a sandwiches kind of guy) so I want something else to eat for lunch

Post a Comment

The Corporatepreneur © 2008. Template by Dicas Blogger.