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European Health and Digital Executive Agency (HaDEA)
News article16 April 2024European Health and Digital Executive Agency1 min read

CEF Highlight of the Month: providing free Wi-Fi throughout Europe with WiFi4EU

CEF CEF Highlight of the Month: providing free Wi-Fi throughout Europe with WiFi4EU

This year marks 10 years since the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Programme was launched in 2014. To celebrate its anniversary, HaDEA will publish a series of articles to highlight the results and achievements of this funding instrument.  Today we put the spotlight on WiFi4EU funded under the CEF-Telecom programme.

“Everyone benefiting from connectivity means that it should not matter where you live or how much you earn. So, we propose today to equip every European village and every city with free wireless internet access around the main centres of public life by 2020.” Jean-Claude Juncker.

With these ambitious words pronounced during the State of the Union in September 2016, the former European Commission president Juncker set the goal for the WiFi4EU initiative.

WiFi4EU has successfully contributed to turn this bold vision into reality: four calls for proposals were launched between November 2018 and June 2020 to award municipalities with a €15 000 voucher to deploy free Wi-Fi hotspots in public spaces like parks, squares, public buildings, libraries, health centres or museums throughout Europe. Overall, around 10% of the European municipalities were awarded a voucher!

The first municipality to install its Wi-Fi network and receive the voucher was Wiesfleck, in Austria, in June 2019. In total, 7 237 municipalities have installed more than 93 000 hotspots, reaching a peak of seven million connections in August 2022.

The majority of the deployed networks remain active and used after several years of operation. When studying for your final exams in the city library, when traveling for holidays or when visiting your favourite museum, find a WiFi4EU hotspot near you!


Publication date
16 April 2024
European Health and Digital Executive Agency
Programme Sector
  • Digital
  • Connecting Europe Facility 1
  • WiFi4EU Initiative
  • Digital technology
  • Digital transformation
  • EUFunded
  • Event