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Old 18-08-2009, 07:11   #31
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- - I should have been clearer on the Work Permits. They are required if you are on land in the country receiving compensation for services. This is to protect the jobs for the locals. Doing work inside your boat at anchor or whatever, so long as it does not involve or require "on-land" activities does not require a work permit.....
Work permits, of whatever form, are very often required if you are doing work that could be properly done by a citizen of the country concerned. On land, underwater or aboard ship or plane. (Flowers or a fly swat?) Eg. to paint my own boat or to fix it, while in the US, there are times when that work has to be done by people with the right to work in the US. So if I don't have a visa for that purpose I must employ someone who has the right to do it.

Exceptions are: where the employer has enough political clout to get the visa / permit processed; when the voyage by plane or ship originates in another country. As there are hundreds of counties there are tens of thousands of laws and regulations. Luckily: getting it straight while sailing from the UK to California & Hawaii, made it that much easier to figure out working in Japan when I got there, 8 years later. Though it was "" for a while.
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Old 18-08-2009, 07:30   #32
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Hi,
Cannot comment about US cell phone range or cover but in the EU you'll usually pick up cell phone around 10 miles off the coast.
And yes, that could mean 3G or GPRS connection if you have the card.
We also can email via our HF radio, but very slow and it is only for email and not web.
Also highly recommend an external antenna plus amplifyer to allow you to go wifi from your computer when in harbour or anchorage. Ours (actually sent from USA) claims a 2 mile range and has often provided us free connections.
Good luck
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Old 18-08-2009, 10:18   #33
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man, you guys just don't pay attention ; -)

http://www.mackaysatellite.com/media...Mackay0409.pdf

Unless you are a penguin, or a polar bear, they have you covered. It may be slow, and it's not cheap, but it's there ; -)

hummm... free... one of them ya gets what ya pay fer deals huh?
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Old 18-08-2009, 17:04   #34
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George Wade:
I should have been clearer. I only know about the island countries of the Caribbean. Here it has been tested in several courts in the countries and has been ruled that visiting cruisers who do work onboard their vessels and do not engage in work for money on land are legal and do not need work permits. Elsewhere in the world it might be different as you suggest.
The phrase visiting cruisers is crucial as they do not want to discourage visiting cruisers from stopping to visit their countries since we spend money to make jobs ashore for the locals. The island countries are very sensitive to the annual migration of hundreds if not thousands of boats over the years that spend money that amounts to a significant percentage of each islands revenue. Only "overt" conflicts are of concern to them. As some government officials have told me - go ahead and make as much money as possible while inside your vessel and spend it here, please!
And if you do want to start a business on land that will employ a number of locals, getting the permission and work permits is relatively easy and welcomed. Anything that keeps people employed or employs more locals helps to keep the country stabilized politically which the politicians in power recognize.
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Old 18-08-2009, 18:26   #35
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Iridium Open Port, Fleet Broadband, etc. etc....

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Not cheap... but possible. very possible...

Sara, et al,

It's not only possible, but it's been done worldwide for a while now.....

Don't overlook the advantages of broadband internet at sea, provided by an Iridium Open Port system, as well.....

Have a look at a detailed discussion, including prices, of Iridium Open Port and INMARSAT Fleet Broadband here:

SSCA Discussion Board • View topic - Satellite Internet Service?

All "broadband" internet services while at sea and in remote locales, are very pricey.......but easily doable if you have the $$$$....

Fair winds....

John
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Old 22-08-2009, 21:26   #36
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George Wade:
... Here it has been tested in several courts in the countries and has been ruled that visiting cruisers who do work onboard their vessels and do not engage in work for money on land are legal and do not need work permits. Elsewhere in the world it might be different as you suggest...... As some government officials have told me - go ahead and make as much money as possible while inside your vessel and spend it here, please!
And if you do want to start a business on land that will employ a number of locals, getting the permission and work permits is relatively easy and welcomed....
I can certainly live with that...
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Old 25-08-2009, 21:24   #37
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Just one question

And that is WHY would anyone want internet access while at sea.
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Old 25-08-2009, 21:55   #38
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And that is WHY would anyone want internet access while at sea.
The Midnight dog watch: Looking at Britany Spears




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Old 25-08-2009, 22:03   #39
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uhhh...cause maybe if your choice is staying ashore and working or going to sea and working... ya might pick the latter?

I am thinking that my web site management business is highly portable and pretty lucrative as a part time occupation... Himself is older and will be retired shortly, but I am a LONG way from retirement, and while I do the 'kept woman' thang as well an any chick, I also like to have my own income flow....
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Old 25-08-2009, 22:04   #40
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Compromise

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The Midnight dog watch: Looking at Britany Spears
.
Still less expensive than having Britany, in person, aboard. Somewhat less demanding, too ?
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Old 25-08-2009, 22:29   #41
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After looking at all the links offered and independent web searches - it can be said that pure "satellite" internet service is not economically viable for the average cruiser. You are looking a a minimum of about $6K for hardware and about $500 a month for service. AND - it is not "broadband" service despite their co-opting the word. Here is an extract from Wikipedia on Broadband
->>Although various minimum bandwidths have been used in definitions of broadband, ranging up from 64 kbit/s up to 2.0 Mbit/s[1], the 2006 OECD report[2] is typical by defining broadband as having download data transfer rates equal to or faster than 256 kbit/s, while the United States (US) Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as of 2009, defines broadband as data transmission speeds exceeding 200 kilobits per second (Kbps), or 200,000 bits per second, in at least one direction: downstream (from the Internet to the user’s computer) or upstream (from the user’s computer to the Internet).[3] The trend is to raise the threshold of the broadband definition as the marketplace rolls out faster services.[4]-<<<
- - What Iridium OP is offering is speeds ranging from 9.6kbps (watch the characters appear on the screen one at a time) and up to a maximum of 128Kbps or an average speed equal to your internal modem using phone lines. Typical Caribbean WiFi is 11 mbps (mega bits Not Kilo bits) which is about 183 times faster.
- - What Iridium OP is offering is far superior than the old satellite services which were in the 10 to 20kbps speed range.
- - Average prices of WiFi per month in the Caribbean is about $50/month (some lower, some higher). That is 10% of the Iridium OP costs per month not even counting the equipment costs.
- - So it seems it is a little too early to do any switching over right now. The SSCA link goes into the other severe restrictions involved in using Iridium OP, that they say if not followed can result in $25K monthly phone bills. Winlink, Sailmail, and SSB for open ocean work and WiFi when in harbor seems to be the most reasonable cost-effective communications available to average cruisers - I predict - for the foreseeable future.
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Old 26-08-2009, 01:01   #42
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I have been investigating high-gain GSM antennas for my boat. I've heard anicdotal evidence that you can get cell phone (and 3G) coverage up to 20 miles out with a good system.

Good system is around 50db of gain, including a 3W amplifier and an omnidirectonal antenna. Directional antennas can be better, but aren't as practical for a boat. It can also be set up with a local repeater that can even provide cell services to multiple devices (and maybe even nearby boats).*

Since GSM and the data-version GPRS, is used in most places in the world, it could be a good way to pick up cell service in coastal waters, even without a marina to aim your wifi antenna at. It would be expensive to deal with roaming charges, but many locales, especially asia, offer pre-paid SIM cards which can allow you to plug your phone into inexpensive local rates while visiting.

Worth a try!

*Note: Some local laws may prohibit repeaters or limit their power. Use at your own risk.
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Old 26-08-2009, 01:26   #43
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I've heard anicdotal evidence that you can get cell phone (and 3G) coverage up to 20 miles out with a good system.

.
I have posted here on this very forum from 14nms off the coast without any sort of aerial.

Anicdotally.....



mind you the same modem in Indonesia is having a slow old time of it! At least they have the system!
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Old 26-08-2009, 02:14   #44
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I have posted here on this very forum from 14nms off the coast without any sort of aerial.

Anicdotally.....



mind you the same modem in Indonesia is having a slow old time of it! At least they have the system!
Very nice!

with a gain of 50db from an antenna and amplifier, you should theoretically get about 5x more range, but at that range, it depends on height of the antenna and atmospheric conditions.

Imagine firing it up 100nms off shore and getting online? :-)
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Old 26-08-2009, 07:17   #45
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- - Two aspects of cell phone and Wifi - They are gigahertz range signals which are line of sight. Unless you are one of those who still believe the earth is "flat" you have a simple limit due to "dropping below the horizon" on a round world. The old rule of square root of antenna height time 3.15 (or something near that) yields about a theoretical limit in the 30nm area (plus or minus). And secondly, there is the real limiting factor - even when you only a fraction of a mile from the antenna - your systems transmission wattage. Because of worries about RF devices up against your body or very close by, output wattages of cellphones and WiFi devices are restricted to low order milliwatts. The giant cellphone towers and to a lesser degree WiFi antenna locations are far enough away from human bodies so that much higher wattage outputs are allowed.
- - Success of either cellphone or wifi is not primarily related to how many of the little bars you get on your signal meter, but by how much power you have to get your signal back to the shore-side antenna. An external antenna for either device that can output watts instead of milliwatts can make a dramatic difference. The "MarineRV" stick antenna really works wonders as it contains a powered transmitter boosting your signal strength. Available on the web are units that can put out significant wattage and extend your range to equal the land-side antennas output power. But the equipment is not cheap and needs to be permanently mounted on your boat.
- - I think that sometimes our vessels are starting to look like a NASA test ship with all the various antennas all over the boat. And how well these high powered antennas hold up to salt water and salt atmospheres is yet to be determined. I went through a lot of the little flip-up powered wifi antennas designed for in-home use before the "MarineRV" stick came on the market.
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