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Old 15-12-2011, 16:06   #1
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BTC Internet in the Bahamas

Just wanted to let you know about my internet access experience in the Bahamas so far this year. When we arrived in Nassau last week, we went to BTC Cyberworld downtown and purchased a Samsung Galaxy Mini for $170 dollars. We bought the SIM card and bought some prepaid minutes. We can use the phone as a portable hotspot and connect to the internet for $30 a month, $10 a week or $2 a day. The internet access worked fine in Nassau. At Highbourne Cay it seemed to work ok but slow. At Normans and Shroud Cay, I needed to use my Wilson Signalboost to get a minimal internet signal. I can load up emails and other sites, but it takes a while and some sites barely come up, and forget about videos. I am happy to be able to check emails, weather, and download gribs and not pay a ton for it…
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Old 15-12-2011, 16:43   #2
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

That sounds pretty reasonable, I use my Evo on the Chesapeake bay with about the same results. Its not the best but at least you have access for a decent price.
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Old 15-12-2011, 17:12   #3
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

Last time I was anchored in Nassau harbor, I was close enough to that outside tiki bar (forget the name) that I could pick up their free wifi signal. Though I recall the signal seemed to fade everyday around happy hour, so I just had to grab the laptop and dinghy into shore to continue using the Internet. At least, that was the excuse I used.
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Old 16-12-2011, 06:39   #4
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

Batelco just launched 4G in November (here's our latest update), which they claim sped up data 20-30 times. Coverage area? I guess we'll see if that has improved, or is worse. Reliability? That's a whole other story...
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Old 02-01-2012, 17:25   #5
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by msulc View Post
We can use the phone as a portable hotspot and connect to the internet for $30 a month, $10 a week or $2 a day…
Was there a data limit on that plan? I am considering anchoring in Nassau for up to a month while I work from the boat. I will need a good internet connection so I can remote into my work machine. Does that sound doable there?

BTW: I also have a 15 DBI wi-fi antenna with bridge so I should be able to pick up WI-FI from about 1 km away without trees in the way. Think there would be any free hotspots with broadband speed?
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Old 03-01-2012, 06:57   #6
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, FranklinGray.

Evidently, the following business’, in New Providence, provide free WiFi:

All Starbucks locations:
- Woodes Rogers Walk
- Marina Village, Paradise Island
- Cable Beach Casino
- Harbour Bay Shopping Center
- Mall at Marathon
- Oakes Field
- The Reef, Atlantis

And
Conch Fritters, West Bay Street, opposite British Colonial Hilton
The Sheraton Nassau Beach Resort (paying guests)
Mall at Marathon Food Court
McDonalds in Oakes Field and Downtown
Different of Nassau, Casuarinas Cable Beach, West Bay Street
Comfort Suites, Paradise Island (paying guests)

thebahamasweekly.com - FREE WIFI Hot Spots of The Bahamas Directory
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Old 03-01-2012, 07:04   #7
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, FranklinGray.

Evidently, the following business’, in New Providence, provide free WiFi:
Thanks. I saw that on the web too but most if not all those are indoor and not sure I'll be able to pick it up from anchor even with a powerful antenna.
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Old 03-01-2012, 07:17   #8
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Thanks. I saw that on the web too but most if not all those are indoor and not sure I'll be able to pick it up from anchor even with a powerful antenna.
Why would you only consider free Wifi as an option for paid cell data? Nobody asks for free cell data access....

cheers,
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Old 03-01-2012, 07:38   #9
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Why would you only consider free Wifi as an option for paid cell data? Nobody asks for free cell data access....

cheers,
Nick.
Nick:

True, I shouldn't have added the restriction of free. I am just trying to determine my options before I commit to going there. I am willing to pay a normal amount for internet but I would very much like to get that internet on the boat. When I say normal amount, I am talking less than $100 USD a month but it has to be reliable. I am starting to find comments on the web about the internet there being down at least a couple of hours each day and sometimes all day. Can anybody verify that?

Franklin
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Old 03-01-2012, 07:50   #10
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Nick:

True, I shouldn't have added the restriction of free. I am just trying to determine my options before I commit to going there. I am willing to pay a normal amount for internet but I would very much like to get that internet on the boat. When I say normal amount, I am talking less than $100 USD a month but it has to be reliable. I am starting to find comments on the web about the internet there being down at least a couple of hours each day and sometimes all day. Can anybody verify that?

Franklin
The Internet is never down. When something is down is normally is an access provider or a part of his network. If you can't survive outages like when you are day-trading, you can't do that in the Bahamas or anywhere else around the Caribbean Sea. Mainland Panama is okay but still has some outages every year.

cheers,
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:00   #11
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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If you can't survive outages like when you are day-trading, you can't do that in the Bahamas or anywhere else around the Caribbean Sea.
Thanks Nick. I don't plan on doing much trading. I am a software developer for a small company here in Kemah, TX. Because of how bad my allergies have gotten the past couple of years, I told them I was leaving before next April and that's when we worked out a deal where I can remote into my work computer and work from the Islands. I'm sure at some point they will have gotten used to me working from the boat and allow me to just upload my work when I am done, but the first few months I think it's important to be able to remote in. Maybe I should stay in Key West until I'm ready to head to Colombia for hurricane season in June.
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Old 03-01-2012, 09:00   #12
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Maybe I should stay in Key West until I'm ready to head to Colombia for hurricane season in June.
Key West?! Save your money and stay in Houston or something. If you don't tell the boss, he will never figure out where you are

ciao!
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Old 03-01-2012, 09:19   #13
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Key West?! Save your money and stay in Houston or something. If you don't tell the boss, he will never figure out where you are

ciao!
Nick.
I will be on anchor the whole time so it should be less than what I am spending now. Although I've had the bug to sail around the world since I was 16, I'm leaving now due to allergy problems to Oak Tree polen which is very bad here. So I can't stay here.
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Old 03-01-2012, 09:29   #14
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by FranklinGray View Post
Thanks Nick. I don't plan on doing much trading. I am a software developer for a small company here in Kemah, TX. Because of how bad my allergies have gotten the past couple of years, I told them I was leaving before next April and that's when we worked out a deal where I can remote into my work computer and work from the Islands. I'm sure at some point they will have gotten used to me working from the boat and allow me to just upload my work when I am done, but the first few months I think it's important to be able to remote in. Maybe I should stay in Key West until I'm ready to head to Colombia for hurricane season in June.
If you're flexible on where you go and just want to be working from your boat at anchor in a relatively warm climate, think about the West Coast of Florida or Marathon if you can deal with the fees for a mooring ball. If you want to be in the Bahamas, internet access in the Abacos is more reliable than in most other areas.

In the Abacos, there is reliable WIFI available at almost all of the protected anchorages for around $100/mo. The two main providers are Out Island Internet Home - Out Island Internet and Bahamas Wimax Home.

We work from our boat and need good internet access. Both of these providers were very reliable when we were there last winter. You will need a long range wifi device like the Island Time PC system Marine PC's & WiFi by IslandTime PC or something similar. Also, I understand that Batelco is beginning to offer 3G or 4G coverage. Haven't tried it yet.

You could work at anchor for weeks or months anchored in Marsh Harbor, Treasure Cay, or on a mooring ball in Hopetown with great weather protection and excellent internet access.
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Old 03-01-2012, 09:40   #15
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Re: BTC Internet in the Bahamas

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If you're flexible on where you go and just want to be working from your boat at anchor in a relatively warm climate, think about the West Coast of Florida or Marathon if you can deal with the fees for a mooring ball. If you want to be in the Bahamas, internet access in the Abacos is more reliable than in most other areas.

You will need a long range wifi device like the Island Time PC system Marine PC's & WiFi by IslandTime PC or something similar...
Thanks. So you like Marathon better than Key West. I may go that route. West Coast of Florida is a problem due to the winds (allergies -- I am looking for an Island or where the winds blow from the sea).

I have a system kind of like that but it should be 3x stronger. I have a 15 DBI ommi antenna with a bridge.
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