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Old 28-03-2010, 14:11   #1
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Wireless Internet While Cruising

Can someone tell me roughly what percentage of marinas worldwide (very roughly is fine) have wireless internet? Does it usually cost money? How much? Can you ever get wireless internet while on the hook?

I hope to be able to do some blogging and emailing while I cruise, plus some internet will be great when I need to make repairs and modifications to my boat.

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Old 28-03-2010, 14:44   #2

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My experience along the east coast of the US:

Marinas with free WiFi: 50%
Marinas with pay-for WiFi: 15%
Marinas where you can get cellular internet: 98%
Anchorages where you can get free WiFi: 10%
Anchorages where you can get cellular internet: 95%

Send from free WiFi at an anchorage. Miami Beach provides free WiFi for visitors and residents that extends over a couple of anchorage areas. Finding something like this is pretty rare.

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Old 06-04-2010, 07:55   #3
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Get a good external wifi antenna, and you can usually get wifi in over 90% of the marina areas and over half the anchorages in civilized areas. The connection can be slow at times--currently linked to Hothothotspot in Bequia, which is US$50/mo and has pretty good installations in several islands from Greneda to Antigua.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:01   #4
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Get yourself a high power wifi setup - alpha or Bullet. Several threads on the subject if you search the forum, including the monster Long-Distance WiFi Device thread.
Regards, Ed

Delivering boats for a living - no more!
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:28   #5
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If you have a 3G cellphone, you can often tether your computer to your phone. It usually takes a little additional software if you have a standard phone, but it's a built-in function to most blackberries. You can also do it with the iPhone, but you have to jailbreak it as AT&T hasn't delivered an official tethering plan yet.

You can also get netbooks for about $200 that cost around $40 a month for an unlimited 3G data plan that allows you to surf the web anywhere you get cell phone reception.

This would give you Internet anywhere you get a phone signal, not just where there is wifi available. Of course, neither a cell phone nor a netbook with data plan are free.

More and more cafes and shopping centers have wifi, so if you can't find it in the marina, you wouldn't have to go far to find someplace on shore. There's Starbucks everywhere, and their wifi always works, but it's only free if you have AT&T -- which goes back to the cost of a cell phone with a data plan.

And if you're going International, make sure you pay for the International Data plan as it is FAR cheaper than the ridiculous price carriers charge for international data roaming. The upside is, you can turn it on and off when you know you're leaving the country, so you don't have to pay for it all the time.
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Old 06-04-2010, 09:16   #6
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Marina wifis are very, very slow, clogged up. I got a usb broadband modem, with a built in gps, good foe cmaps, and I can use the net anywhere I can get a mobile signal in Thailand and Malaysia, need two sim cards though.
Got a usb modem with an external antenna socket and a 10 metre lead to a hifh gain antenna and it's incredible where you pick up mobile phone signals. Very happy with it!

Keith, "But I was born very young and grew up knowing little of the world!"
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