Getting a Chromecast to work with Hotel Wi-Fi

I just spent a week in Hong Kong, and thanks to some great advice online, I had decided to bring one of my Airport Express devices with me in the hopes that I can get my Google Chromecast device to work on it.

I had stayed at the Park Lane Hotel in Causeway Bay (which incidentally has a nicely appointed hotel room for Persons With Disabilities — including a roll-in shower and grab bars around the toilet). They offer free Wi-Fi to all guests and the only login credentials you need to get past the hotel login interstitial page are your last name and room number.

I wasn’t too keen, however, on the idea of connecting to the public hotel wifi directly, as that would mean I’d have to authorize each of my devices individually. The Chromecast device doesn’t have a mechanism for handling the hotel’s interstitial login page (or if it does, I’ve not figured out how myself).

Luckily, the hotel also offers a wired ethernet cable in the room. It was a simple matter of plugging the ethernet cable into the Airport Express, and setting up the Airport Express correctly.

Specifically, the Airport Express had to be configured to:

  • Connect to the internet via the Ethernet cable; and
  • Share a public IP address
Connect using Ethernet and Share a public IP address

By opting to use “Share a public IP address” as the connection sharing setting, I only had to go through the hotel authorization login page once using one device. From that point on, all other devices accessing the hotel network via the Airport Express looked like the same device, so there was no need to log in per device.

The last hurdle to get the Chromecast working was to switch the hotel TV to HDMI as an input source. Luckily, the TV remote control offered that option (I just had to use the not-so-helpfully-named “A/V” button).

Side note: I was intent on getting Chromecast to work so I can stream TV shows from my iFlix subscription for my travel companions. The service isn’t available in Hong Kong, but my IronSocket subscription allowed me to use their OpenVPN service to get it working.

Hope this helps you in some way.

Edited to add: Rom asks in a response below what device I had used to configure the Airport Express. I had used an old Macbook Air that was still using the Mac OS version that had been pre-installed on it — hence the older Airport Utility user interface in the above screenshot.

Always curious about Business, Tech & Startups, Leadership & Management, Writing & Editing, Life. You can reach me through DMs on Twitter at @mdy

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