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Old 25-09-2016, 10:55   #1
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Satellite TV, Internet, and phone while cruising

Hi, I am provisioning my cruiser to head for the western Caribbean toward Central America. I am looking for recommendations for TV, Internet and phone equipment and reception/telecommunication service while cruising.
What equipment should I purchase to enable me to have the ability to text, email, and get tv reception if possible?
Please also advice what service provider is available and offers coverage for off shore cruisers.
I have a limited budget to pay for both equipment and the service provider so any money-saving advice will be most appreciated.
Thanks in advance
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Old 25-09-2016, 11:50   #2
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Re: Satellite TV, Internet, and phone while cruising

Sat TV underway is expensive in both equipment and plan. We have a small TV, but use it mostly for DVDs on rainy days. Have a cheap digital antenna for over the air TV, but outside US this not readily available. Really, so much to see and do you wont miss the TV.

Internet. Suggest a few methods. Hotspots at cafes/bars with laptop. Powered wifi antenna like a Rogue Wave for the boat. Local data plan for your smart phone and use it as a hot spot. We use all three.

Phone. Calls get expensive, especially with roaming. Look at an unlocked GSM, quad band smart phone. Get a local SIMM and add a data plan. Set up a Skype account, this allows you to Skype call to most any country for 0.02/min. Can call to a land line or another cell phone. As well you can then Skype or use facetime for android/google app for free when contacting someone on same service.

T Mobile offers a roaming free international data plan but it has mixed reviews. It works but seems the data rates in many places are slower than getting a local simm and data plan.
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Old 27-09-2016, 08:52   #3
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Location: Grand Rivers, KY
Boat: Hunter 2003 356 - Persistence
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Re: Satellite TV, Internet, and phone while cruising

Sat TV through Dishnetwork is not expensive in the US if you already have a Dish account. You just pay for adding an additional receiver to your home system. You have to have a tracking antenna such as a KVH TV3 or TV5. The I have had Dish in my Hunter 356 since new in 2003 and this year changed out my old Trackvision 4 to the TV3. I am located on Kentucky Lake, but I have cruised from there to southwest Florida and back. Once you leave Dish US coverage, you would need another plan based on the area you are going and I don't know anything about the costs of those.

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Old 27-09-2016, 09:08   #4
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Location: La Honda, California
Boat: Beneteau Oceanis 50
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Re: Satellite TV, Internet, and phone while cruising

Look at Google project Fi for phone and Internet. It works in 130 some countries, charges $10/GB for data anywhere. Phone calls are cheap, although Skype is cheaper. You can use Skype on the project Fi phone. No need for changing to local sim cards.

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