3917 Georgia Ave, NW
I work from home several days a week and many times I find myself at Qualia or other coffee shops to start my day. Going to Qualia is always a crapshoot given the limited seating options, but I do enjoy their freshly roasted beans. This morning, there happened to be seats, but when I asked for the wifi password, I was told “they were not doing wifi anymore.” I had already paid for my coffee and there was no signage indicating this new policy. I’m not opposed to no wifi to encourage person to person discussion, but given the extremely limited space and general setup of Qualia, the cafe itself doesn’t really encourage this type of interaction. I’m never able to bring groups of friends (or even my spouse) to Qualia because the seating is minimal. Rarely are there two seats together. The counter/bar along the wall seems specifically designed for computers. Maybe “no wifi” fits their business model? Maybe they are trying to prove a point? Regardless of their reasoning, it will definitely impact their business from me. I no longer plan to go there.”
“Our current WiFi Policy is clearly stated on our web site here.
We are not trying to discourage people from using Qualia to work, play or meet. We have come to the conclusion that it is no longer necessary or beneficial to offer Internet access. Now that open and mobile hot spots are now readily available, no longer offering free WiFi was not intended to create a significant barrier for people who wanted to work on their computers. However, we had reached a tipping point in the volume and nature of customers we were serving. Those visiting us only for free Internet access had begun to crowd out the people who were visiting us for the unique coffee experience we offer. Given how limited out space is, it only takes a handful of folks camping out for hours at a time to diminish our ability to serve a broader spectrum of customers.
That said, we are open to everyone’s comments and concerns. Our WiFi policies have changed over time and are bound to continue doing so.”
Ed. Note: Qualia was recently voted 5th best coffee in DC.