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Using the Internet and Internet Cafes in Poland

Finding the Internet in Poland

It is one of the features of modern travel, and indeed modern life as a whole. Access to the internet has become a necessity not a luxury, and many travellers will need frequent access to the web to manage their finances, travel plans, bookings, and a whole myriad of other things that used to be done with good old pen on paper. In most of Poland's major cities internet access is rife, with WiFi access or computer stations available free of charge in most bars, hotels and hostels. So, you probably won't have anything to worry about, just sit back, connect and surf away. However, Poland's not all internet connections and WiFi, there's still large rural tracts of this country where an internet connection may be as rare as a latte, and the closest you'll get to a computer is a combine harvester. But it's pretty too, and it would be a shame to let a lack of technology stop your adventures in these more bucolic parts; wouldn’t it?

Internet Poland

So, armed with some useful vocabulary and the required sentences, with any luck you will be able to search out internet hotpots wherever you are, or at least enquire as to where you need to be to pick up that coveted signal.

Using an Internet Cafe in Poland

There's no better way to get what you want, wherever you are in Poland, than by asking. Even if you get it wrong, it won't do any harm and you may be able to squeeze just one word that your interlocutor might just rozumiesz (understand). So, it's a good start to know the word for internet cafe - Kafejki internetowe - and hopefully locals will point you in the right direction. Of course, it's even better to use the full question, 'przepraszam, gdzie jest najbliższa kafejka internetowa?, 'excuse me, where is the nearest internet cafe?'.

Once you've found you're destination you'll need to know some grammar to explain what it is you want and for how long. You can ask at the front desk 'Przepraszam, ile kosztuje godzina połączenia z Internetem?' (excuse me, how much does the internet cost for one hour), or perhaps - if money really is no object - just say chciałbym skorzystać z internetu przez godzinę (I would like to use the internet for one hour).

Connecting to the Web from Poland

There are other questions that may come in handy when it comes to connecting in Poland. For example, to ask if an establishment has its own Wifi connection you can say, czy macie Wifi (do you have Wifi?), while if you are just struggling to connect because you don't know the password, just ask jakie jest hasło do Wifi (what is the Wifi password?). You may get the disappointing answer nie ma dostepu do Internetu, which you can probably guess from the use of the negated verb 'to have' (nie ma), means simply 'there is no internet connection'.

If in doubt you can usually convey your meaning with a combination of the useful words, the verb 'to have' in the second person singular (masz, [you have]), the noun for 'connection' ( połączenie), and the noun for 'the internet' (it's an easy one, Internet): Masz połączenie z Internetem? (Do you have an internet connection?). It's a bit rough, but it may just get you on the web!