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Pros and Cons Of Different Internet Access Systems For Travelers

Are you planning to travel abroad soon? Do your plans include how to stay connected even when you go off the grid in far-flung places? Here are some options for you to choose from and their pros and cons.

 Use satellite Internet

Let’s start with something that will help you when you’re off the grid. If you know you will be staying in a remote area for a long time; you might want to get a satellite Internet hotspot.

 You’ll be able to access the Internet even if you go to a remote mountain or a place that cell towers cannot reach. You can get a fast connection despite your location.

 But, depending on your service provider, you might pay more for the hardware. The weather might also affect your hotspot’s signal. 

Use your accommodation’s connection

Even if you stay in a hotel, hostel, or Airbnb room, almost all of these will have Internet connections. Just double-check with your host before you book your accommodations.

You won’t have to worry about finding a connection at the end of each day of your trip. Many of these will offer the Internet connection free of charge.

But if you stay in a crowded venue, you’ll be sharing the connection with other vacationers. So, the connection will likely be slow. Plus, some destinations have costly Internet fees. So, you’ll probably have to pay extra to access the wifi connection.

Apply for international phone plans

Connected to the above option, apply for a global phone plan before you leave your country. Many mobile network operators offer plans that allow you to use data and messaging services, even overseas.

 This is an entirely mobile option you can use in many countries. You’ll be able to check your emails and make calls in some remote spots. If you’ve got one of the latest models, you can even turn your phone into a wifi hotspot for other electronic gadgets.

 But you’ll need to pay extra for a high-speed international plan. Otherwise, your connection will be slow and can be used for basic services only. Also, you’ll need to be wary of hidden charges. Sometimes, you’ll get data charged for apps that continue to run in the background. 

Use a local SIM card

If you’ve got an unlocked phone, you can buy a local prepaid SIM card that’s been preloaded with data.

This can be a cheaper alternative to an international plan. 

But this option will not work for all phone types. Plus, if you’re going to several countries, buying new ones each time you enter a new country can be time-consuming. It can also be tricky to buy one if you’re in a country where you’re experiencing a language barrier. 

Use portable wifi devices

If you have other gadgets like a laptop, having a mobile wifi device or hotspot will be ideal.

You’ll be able to connect several gadgets to one hotspot. Depending on the model you get, you’ll be able to enjoy Internet access for several hours.

 But you’ll need to pay quite a bit for the device. Also, even though you’ll be able to watch videos, you won’t be able to binge-watch or stream videos because the connection can slow down after you’ve consumed several bytes of data.


Thanks to modern technology, you now have several options to stay connected when you travel. You even have choices for when you go to that remote Caribbean island you’ve always wanted to visit.