skype_logoOur friend Margie is stuck in France, because of the volcanic ash. Hopefully, she can connect to a WiFi hotspot, but a lot of these aren’t free. You have to get out a credit card and fiddle with numbers.

Skype is offering free connections this week through a feature called “Skype Access.” You can connect to the Internet in over 100,000 hotspots around the world starting today through Friday, April 23 — including most international airports.

That’s a stingy offer, but it’s a good way to try out Skype Access, which is a new feature  that lets anyone pay for WiFi access using Skype credit, which you buy in advance at Just select an available public access WiFi network from the list that pops up on your computer screen and Skype will pop up offering to use your credit balance.  When the free period is over, the cost is 19 cents a minute.

For a list of compatible WiFi networks, visit Unfortunately, it only works on Windows and Mac computers, not the new iPad.

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