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Old 11-04-2012, 08:46   #1
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Bahamas Internet Question

I've been searching the Batelco Bahamas site, but am not finding the info I am looking for. Perhaps that's because it doesn't exist, but it's not clear from their site.

When we're in the US, my wife uses a Verizon Mobile Hotspot setup ( with a Wilson amp) that I put together for her, to work as a software consultant. It's been working great, 3G just about everywhere we've been, with short periods of 4G as we flash through larger towns.

We are now planning to sail from Florida down through the Bahamas next month, (may 2012). It would be really great if she could get some work done while we're cruising, or even at anchor.

AT&T has a similar setup to the Verizon mobile hotspot, and I think better coverage in Florida although the Verizon is good enough there. We now travel with this setup, and it's worked well in hotels and rental cars all over the US.

Do any of you folks know of a similar system that works in the Bahamas? Basically I'm looking for continuous internet access when we're within range of a BTC cell tower. I've seen some mention of a 'private internet service' , but no details. This is one of those things where we don't mind spending a few bucks. It's that important.
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Old 12-04-2012, 08:29   #2
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Re: Bahamas internet question

There was no Verizon coverage anywhere in the Bahamas last time I was there (2009). AT&T has (reportedly) good coverage, at least in the Abacos. Have you tried contacting Out-Island Internet? They also have good coverage in the Abacos.
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Old 12-04-2012, 08:36   #3
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Re: Bahamas internet question

If you get an unlocked GSM aircard, you can get a SIM chip in the Bahamas. Then you sign up for the Blackberry service. Don't let the name fool you, it is what they call their 3g data service. Speeds will be all over the place depending on where you are. If you go to the Abacos, you can sign up for WIFI through Out Island Internet (OII) or Bahamas WiMax and have coverage in most areas around the Hub of Abaco.
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:56   #4
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Re: Bahamas internet question

+1 on Beach Cruiser, I have just spent 3 months cruising the Bahamas, got an unlocked aircard from ebay for 30$, then go to a batelco office in the bahamas, buy a 15$ sim card and then for 30$/month you basically have dial-up speed everywhere throughout the bahamas exception being Warderick Wells and the Ragged's which have none, Nassau has 3g which was nice, and I'm told Freeport but I never went there. But everywhere else, you can at least get email and internet weather albeit slowly.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:20   #5
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Re: Bahamas internet question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beach Cruiser View Post
If you get an unlocked GSM aircard, you can get a SIM chip in the Bahamas. Then you sign up for the Blackberry service. Don't let the name fool you, it is what they call their 3g data service. Speeds will be all over the place depending on where you are. If you go to the Abacos, you can sign up for WIFI through Out Island Internet (OII) or Bahamas WiMax and have coverage in most areas around the Hub of Abaco.
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Originally Posted by stevek098 View Post
I have just spent 3 months cruising the Bahamas, got an unlocked aircard from ebay for 30$, then go to a batelco office in the bahamas, buy a 15$ sim card and then for 30$/month you basically have dial-up speed everywhere throughout the bahamas exception being Warderick Wells and the Ragged's which have none, Nassau has 3g which was nice, and I'm told Freeport but I never went there. But everywhere else, you can at least get email and internet weather albeit slowly.
Thanks folks!

This is great information. My wife needs a regular (but not high-speed) internet connection for a couple of hours per day for 3-4days per week to keep on top of her commitments - and the actual availablility of internet service in and around the Bahamas has always been a bone-of-contention. I'll report the good news! I'm now one step closer to putting the Bahamas on our longterm cruising map!
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Old 12-04-2012, 15:47   #6
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Re: Bahamas internet question

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+1 on Beach Cruiser, I have just spent 3 months cruising the Bahamas, got an unlocked aircard from ebay for 30$, then go to a batelco office in the bahamas, buy a 15$ sim card and then for 30$/month you basically have dial-up speed everywhere throughout the bahamas exception being Warderick Wells and the Ragged's which have none, Nassau has 3g which was nice, and I'm told Freeport but I never went there. But everywhere else, you can at least get email and internet weather albeit slowly.

Curious as to what was the make of the aircard? Chuck
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Old 12-04-2012, 17:33   #7
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

Are there any service providers in the Bahamas for an IPAD micro sim card? All I have heard about is people cutting down the regular sims.

Guy
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Old 13-04-2012, 05:51   #8
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

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Are there any service providers in the Bahamas for an IPAD micro sim card? All I have heard about is people cutting down the regular sims.

Guy
My understanding is you can buy the iPad SIM in Nassau. Someone there is cutting the card down. I have ordered a SIM cutter from Amazon and I am waiting for friends flying over to the Bahamas with the cutter. I then plan to buy the SIM and cut it down myself. It will be another couple of weeks before I can try it.
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Old 27-04-2012, 08:39   #9
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Re: Bahamas internet question

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Originally Posted by stevek098 View Post
+1 on Beach Cruiser, I have just spent 3 months cruising the Bahamas, got an unlocked aircard from ebay for 30$, then go to a batelco office in the bahamas, buy a 15$ sim card and then for 30$/month you basically have dial-up speed everywhere throughout the bahamas exception being Warderick Wells and the Ragged's which have none, Nassau has 3g which was nice, and I'm told Freeport but I never went there. But everywhere else, you can at least get email and internet weather albeit slowly.
Thanks Steve and Beach Cruiser. I just ordered the unlocked GSM air card on eBay. We think we should be clearing in at Bimini late next week. Do you know if there is a BTC store in Alice Town? Or would be even better if I could buy a BTC SIM card at that cellular stuff shop at Miami Airport.
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Old 27-04-2012, 09:00   #10
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

Yep, easy to do in Bimini, you're looking for their blackberry sim card and data service (that's what they know it as)
Just follow the big cell tower in town, shop's right at the bottom!
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Old 27-04-2012, 16:25   #11
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

FYI. BTC just announced that they now have 4G service and a new BTC store in Georgetown, Exumas. Chuck
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Old 28-04-2012, 14:41   #12
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

FYI, just bought a sim card in George Town to use with our iPad. I bought $35 worth of air time and since there is no way to activate the sim with the iPad, I had the sales rep install the sim in a phone at the store. He added the $35 dollars credit and then sent a text to convert the time to a Blackberry data plan for 30 days. I then used the sim cutter bought from Amazon for $5 to cut the sim down. After inserting the sim in the iPad, I went to cellular data settings and added Internet.btcbahamas.com the the APN. 3G popped up and the service works great.
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Old 30-05-2012, 06:30   #13
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

well, we bought the sailboat. spent the entire month of May in Florida getting this all put together, but am writing this from Lake Worth. been living on board for over two weeks now.

We're planning to cross to West End in the next day or so. does anyone know if we can get a sim card in West End?

or will we have to go to Freeport for that/
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Old 30-05-2012, 09:09   #14
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

My Verizon with mi-fi has worked from Bimini to the Exumas. Verizon will sell you an international roaming option which reduces the cost. Might still be too expensive for heavy users. No, I can't remember the figures.
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Old 30-05-2012, 09:41   #15
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Re: Bahamas Internet Question

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My Verizon with mi-fi has worked from Bimini to the Exumas. Verizon will sell you an international roaming option which reduces the cost. Might still be too expensive for heavy users. No, I can't remember the figures.
This is still pretty expensive and will cost a lot more than buying a GSM device and the BTC sim card. Chuck
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