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Old 08-29-2015, 04:00 PM   #1
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Cool Mobile wifi access

Hi all,

We are planning on retiring in a few months and starting a 6 month road trip. One of our road trip needs will be internet access in our TT (not at the campground lodge, etc). My husband and I don't watch TV (unless its the Seahawks ) and are not interested in a "cable/Dish" option unless it provides mobile wifi access. We live in a condo and have Comcast which is the only option available due to HOA rules.

We read all of our daily news via internet/wifi as well as doing research, etc. We both worked as developers and are considering starting a side business (but that's not decided yet). However, this does factor into our long-term planning in this area.

Right now we are using our phone (Verizon) as a hot spot. This has worked for the two weekends a month we go camping. However, we just took a two week vacation and blew through 8 gig of our 10 gig monthly plan. This is obviously not sustainable for our 6 month trip unless we upgrade to a 20 gig plan and monitor usage. However, this is not an option if we start up a side business as we will definitely blow through the 20 gig each month. (reducing our usage is not an option as we want to stay married...nuf said)

Do any of you know of a mobile cable plan that also provides unlimited wifi usage similar to home setups?

The only thing I have found in my research to-date is very expensive ($5-10K) satellite connection hardware from companies that either have or are about to go out of business.

I would love to hear what you all have done to solve this problem!

Thanks,
Debbie
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Old 08-29-2015, 04:21 PM   #2
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I know that T-Mobile offers unlimited data plans that are fairly economical. Might want to check them out. T-Mobile also works well/poorly depending upon where you are geographically --- so be careful. And they don't offer cable/TV.

I would think that Dish or DirecTV would be your best bets for both television and data.
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Old 08-29-2015, 04:26 PM   #3
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We want to stay with Verizon for the coverage.

I spent about 30 minutes searching around on the Dish web site and could NOT find any information about wifi access. Is anyone actually using Dish or DirecTV for internet access?
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Old 08-29-2015, 05:59 PM   #4
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I just called Dish - they do not provide RV internet access, only TV.

I called DirecTV and got the same (although the question was very confusing to them)

I called Verizon and they still do not offer an unlimited data plan, however, they would be happy to charge us double or triple for additional GB. :-/

I can't believe we are the first RVers to try and solve this problem...
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Old 08-29-2015, 06:05 PM   #5
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I have tried but never found a solution to internet on the go outside of Verizon and controlling data usage.

While other wireless carriers have unlimited data their coverage is not that great in many areas. verizon is the best by far nationwide but expensive and like said no unlimited plans.

I thought about Dish but they wont tell you it works in an RV.

So many have tried I just can't find one that comes close to data and speed even close to cable internet. Every seasonal camper I have talked to uses a combination of Verizon..local park wifi and free wifi in places like restaurants etc. I have been known to sit outside in my car on my laptop logged into say a Panera Bread.

Sucks.....
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Old 08-29-2015, 06:11 PM   #6
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If you want to be able to get internet no matter where you roam, you need some form of internet satellite. No mobile (wireless) provider covers everywhere campers go if you don't stay in parks that provide a service. Check out companies/technologies like Hughesnet, INMARSAT, BGAN, RBGAN, iDirect for things that will work anywhere. I have used all of these and many other similar technologies all over the world to provide internet service. You will pay for what you are requesting. The good news there is it sounds like it would be a business expense and deductible (but talk to your local CPA first )
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Old 08-29-2015, 06:18 PM   #7
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What's wrong with the Verizon "hot spot"? We use ours on all our trips as well as when we're home. Verizon offers several plans based on your usage although you do pay for the usage you signed up for on a monthly basis even if you don't use it all. Also, monthly overages are pretty expensive per GB.
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Old 08-29-2015, 06:24 PM   #8
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Go to eBay- there is quite the black market leading out unlimited hotspot plans for somewhere between $120 and $200/month.

We went fulltime 2 months ago and I'm a fulltime/9-5 web developer. I started with a 15gb AT&T shared data plan between 2 cell phones and a hotspot. I bumped that up to 20gb and still has 2gb of overage. Towards the second half of the month when I realized I was in a bad way, I got an 18gb Verizon hotspot plan. I didn't go over on it, but did max it out.

Right now I'm shopping for an unlimited plan on the "resale" market. Additionally I'm looking at wifi (so that I can make better use of campground wifi) and cellular boosters (so I can get better service in fringe areas).
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Old 08-29-2015, 06:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RSchleder View Post
What's wrong with the Verizon "hot spot"? We use ours on all our trips as well as when we're home. Verizon offers several plans based on your usage although you do pay for the usage you signed up for on a monthly basis even if you don't use it all. Also, monthly overages are pretty expensive per GB.
Besides what the OP stated is wrong with it in their case, there is a LOT of white space still on this map and even some of the red is iffy (technical term).

Click image for larger version

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If you only camp in populated areas, that is one thing. If you plan on going austere or somewhat off the beaten path wireless just won't work.


PS T-Mobile didn't work in 95% of the places we camped the past two years, so I am a Verizon customer.
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Old 08-29-2015, 07:29 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RSchleder View Post
What's wrong with the Verizon "hot spot"? We use ours on all our trips as well as when we're home. Verizon offers several plans based on your usage although you do pay for the usage you signed up for on a monthly basis even if you don't use it all. Also, monthly overages are pretty expensive per GB.
I'm looking for an unlimited plan, similar to what you would get with your home wifi. We will probably need 30gb per month -> $225 at current Verizon pricing, more if we start the business.
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