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How Can Escapees have everything right about RVing except internet at their parks?


gr8white

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I arrived at their headquarters park in Livingston Tx last nite and today I am amazed of how perfect this park is setup up. There is always activities going on, they have laundry, they have a whole damn perfect RV community here. The wi fi is ran through tangonet and is horrible. You can only have one connection at a time so you cant have your phone and computer connected to wi fi at the same time, and if you use too much data they throttle you down. I was 1/4 through a movie on Netflix and it stopped because I got throttled down. How could Escapees be so amazing with everything else but this. Being in business since the 70's and knowing everything about the RV lifestyle it makes no sense. I planned on staying here for a few weeks and now I have to leave alot earlier because of this. Everyone in the community say they have been complaining for years but nothing gets done about it. It blows my mind. I depend on wi fi for my job so I cant stay in this otherwise amazing community.

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I depend on wi fi for my job

Hmmmm ... must be an interesting job that depends on streaming Netflix movies via park wifi. I use my own cellular connection for "must have" internet because movie streamers have pretty much crippled most rv park wifi systens, although I would agree that TengoNet is pretty worthless to start with. I don't even try to use it any more.

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I find that wifi in many parks is somewhat hampered because there are those that think they should have unlimited access to everything on the internet. Video, in particular is a hog on internet resources and should be refrained from. RV park internet service is intended to be there for basic services like emailing, banking, and simple browsing. Any use beyond that is abuse of the service and everyone should be aware of this and treat the service accordingly. If you want to download videos and movies, use your own hotspot.

 

I used Tengonet at North Ranch a few weeks ago and did not find any problems with it. It's a basic service and if used as such, it is fine.

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We maintain our MiFi hotspot to handle out internet needs, Now, if I streamed videos, I would need a lot more data than I have. We can always rent a movie if we need to have a movie.

 

I pretty much gave up on the parks WiFi due to bandwidth hogs.

 

Ken

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OP - Hi, and welcome to the board.

 

OK, so you've received feedback that most of us who depend or just want the internet at higher usage rates, do provide our own service.

 

That being said, I agree with you that it is time for RV Parks to change their approach to WiFi. Not a ding to the RV Parks, which started out nicely providing a hotspot, usually up close to the office area, for people to check their emails. In many parks, this slowly expanded to multiple access points, that could service much if not all of the parks spaces. Also somewhere along the way, some parks started seeing it as another revenue stream, and brought in companies or set up their own more robust systems (Usually robust enough to ensure the credit card change processed, for x number of days:)!).

 

But, today, with many areas having major bandwidths available to them at a now reasonable price (I say many, especially parks near larger towns and cities, but for sure not all locations have high speed and bandwidth avail to them.), rolling out more advanced wifi grids within a park is for sure doable. Either roll this into the cost of the park in the regular fee. Or provide levels of use based upon tiered fees paid. I'm also still amazed that 802.11G and many times .11N are the main bandwidths. I've never seen a park with 802.11AC.

 

I recall both Jack Mayer, Tecnomadia, and many, many other members are very sharp on WiFi in general. Jack I believe used too, and still may do so, help RV Parks layout and install their WiFi grids.

 

I think we as a broad got the message across to the the OP about being self sufficient. But how about it, what is the practicality of a park, especially a private 'for member and or coop park' funding and rolling out a robust enough grid t support their parks? In many areas, is this not now a practical investment to consider?

 

Best to all,

Smitty

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I arrived at their headquarters park in Livingston Tx last nite and today I am amazed of how perfect this park is setup up. ...........................

 

I depend on wi fi for my job so I cant stay in this otherwise amazing community.

First of all, let me welcome you to the Escapee's forums, and while you don't say so, I suspect that you may well be a new club member so welcome to that as well. We are happy to have you join us and to be a part of this great organization! I hope that you do return to see what responses you get, since your profile shows only an initial 20 minutes on the site with your first post. We would appreciate an opportunity to respond to your issue an perhaps to be of at least some help. :)

 

I am not a fan of Tengo either and consider it to be a poor service choice for an RV park, but as you travel you will discover that it is not uncommon in RV parks across the country and most are less than ideal as a provider. My suspicion is that they are one of the cheaper providers, but that is only a guess. Escapee RV parks must run at a profit, just as do any successful RV parks so that probably plays a part in the choice management has made, but I'll assure you that even parks which provide a higher quality of wifi to their customers, very rarely allow you to stream movies on their service. In addition, we have run into a limit of one device at a time in other parks that do not use Tengo as well and at least one of the more recent ones the wifi was hosted in the park office but used software that limits to one user at a time for each password issued. I'm not sure how common that is, but it does exist. I don't know that there are no RV parks that allow streaming of movies, but if so I can't recall any that we have been in which did so, since we began to rely upon the park's internet the past few years.

 

Based upon your remarks I am pretty sure that you have not been depending upon RV park provided wifi to do your job for long and I suggest that you will soon discover that very few parks have high enough quality of wifi to be satisfactory for use in a daily occupation. Of all the RV folks we have met who earn their living remotely via the internet (and there are quite a few of them) I can't remember of any who do not have their own internet access which they provide so that they can use it when in areas with no wifi at all. Very few state parks provide wifi and I can't remember ever finding it provided in any federal parks. I have found free wifi at Lowe's when in their parking lot, but you usually need to be close to the store to use it. I doubt that even there you would be very successful in streaming movies. You will need a very high data service to be able to do a lot of that while traveling in an RV. Good luck in your travels and please do return and share with us your experiences and especially share the names and locations of any RV parks with wifi that does allow you to successfully stream movies and also provide what you need to earn your living!

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It blows my mind. I depend on wi fi for my job so I cant stay in this otherwise amazing community.

 

I too rely on internet for part-time engineering consulting work, and would never dream of relying on campground provided wi-fi to accomplish that. I have both AT&T and Verizon USB receivers, amplifiers, external antennae, etc. to make certain that I am connected.

 

And streaming a NetFlix movie on campground provided wi-fi is exactly the problem that is causing campgrounds to pull their systems out completely. You are going to need to revise your practices unless you pursue your own internet services, and even then don't be surprised at how expensive streaming movies can become...

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You should not depend on free park wifi for work. And certainly not for streaming. Many parks have streaming restricted. Any park I set up the system for will certainly have streaming disabled. It negatively impacts other users, and there is rarely (or never) enough bandwidth available to provide streaming for the number of people that would attempt to use the service, were it provided.

 

Use of AC wifi in parks will start to be seen shortly - it is already in some parks. It is only in the last 6 months or so that the manufacturers of Access Points have started making AC devices - and the other items required to support AC - available on the market. I'm working on the addition of a network in the park we work at in the summer and it will be AC. The rest of the park is N, and will be gradually migrated to AC. Most people do not have AC devices yet, but they will, since most new client equipment supports the AC standard.

 

As often stated in these types of threads, it is very difficult for a park to provide reliable high speed data everywhere. And almost impossible to provide streaming for the volume of users required. Things have improved, but not at the same speed as demand. The biggest issue for parks is maintaining the equipment. You have to have someone that can solve issues. And believe me, there WILL BE issues, no matter how good the equipment. So you have two choices - train someone locally (or use a paid local provider that "might" provide support) or use a service like Tengo. Neither seem to be satisfactory for many of the customers, since there are constant complaints about either, no matter how well they work. I've seen networks easily supporting 3 mbps at all sites get constant complaints from customers. Mainly because they cannot stream. It only takes a small percent of people complaining to the owners to have them start questioning if they can provide ANY satisfactory solution. In some cases they take out systems that are performing quite satisfactorily because off that. IMO it is better to provide NO SERVICE than to provide a service that results in disatisfied customers. But that is just my opinion.

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OP - Hi, and welcome to the board.

 

OK, so you've received feedback that most of us who depend or just want the internet at higher usage rates, do provide our own service.

 

That being said, I agree with you that it is time for RV Parks to change their approach to WiFi. Not a ding to the RV Parks, which started out nicely providing a hotspot, usually up close to the office area, for people to check their emails. In many parks, this slowly expanded to multiple access points, that could service much if not all of the parks spaces. Also somewhere along the way, some parks started seeing it as another revenue stream, and brought in companies or set up their own more robust systems (Usually robust enough to ensure the credit card change processed, for x number of days:)!).

 

But, today, with many areas having major bandwidths available to them at a now reasonable price (I say many, especially parks near larger towns and cities, but for sure not all locations have high speed and bandwidth avail to them.), rolling out more advanced wifi grids within a park is for sure doable. Either roll this into the cost of the park in the regular fee. Or provide levels of use based upon tiered fees paid. I'm also still amazed that 802.11G and many times .11N are the main bandwidths. I've never seen a park with 802.11AC.

 

I recall both Jack Mayer, Tecnomadia, and many, many other members are very sharp on WiFi in general. Jack I believe used too, and still may do so, help RV Parks layout and install their WiFi grids.

 

I think we as a broad got the message across to the the OP about being self sufficient. But how about it, what is the practicality of a park, especially a private 'for member and or coop park' funding and rolling out a robust enough grid t support their parks? In many areas, is this not now a practical investment to consider?

 

Best to all,

Smitty

 

This is kind of a "between a rock and a hard place" issue for campgrounds. I, like many, have taken care of my own internet needs. So I am not interested in paying a significant extra charge for a campground to install a top-of-the-line, stream all you want, kind of internet setup. Even if they could (and most can't) I have no need or desire for that service.

 

And I agree with Jack's statement above that some customers are going to complain, no matter what, causing the campground owners to wonder if there is any satisfactory solution. I've seen rigs come in with mom, dad and three kids, all of who have their own devices and want to watch their own content. How are you going to support multiple folks streaming on each site?

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............... IMO it is better to provide NO SERVICE than to provide a service that results in disatisfied customers. But that is just my opinion.

 

I suspect that you get fewer complaints with no service than with sketchy service.

 

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The OP may be legitimate but I am slightly suspicous as it is their first post and on the weekend. I am thinking it "might" be a troll. If it is legitimate then I too welcome the OP on board and hope they will be able to pick up the usefull information from the responses and not take it too hard if some of them come across harshly. Not everyone is as savy about the internet as some of the genius' :angry: on the discussion forums. JUST KIDDING on the last part but it is true we all have different capabilities. I have learned a lot from most of you guys. Some time it just hurts my head when ya'll talk about all this technical stuff. :huh::D

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When we research the next stop WiFi is a plus but doesn't make or break a stop. I'm with Jack, no WiFi, no complaints except from those who expect mega-bandwidth wherever they are. But, don't you dare raise that daily rate or (gasp) charge for it.

 

We rely on Verizon and a bunch of data and never rely on a park to provide our access.

 

BTW, Notice the one and done?

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Ok so yes I am new to Escapees and to this forum. I have read all the comments and let me start out by answering a couple. I understand that I shouldn't stream Netflix because it effects others. However, I only do this when I go to bed around 1am when most in the park are sleeping and not using it. To the guy that made the comment of using Netflix for my job, that is just stupid so I wont comment. I do have a backup myfi but prefer not to use it if I dont have to. This is why I call parks way before I arrive, check on how good their internet is and reserve a spot next to the wi fi transmitter which I have done here at Rainbows End.. I have been on the road for 10 months and this is the first park where I have had a problem. I do not use much data for work. I am a recruiter so I view resumes all day and send small emails without much data in them at all besides the body of the email. Out of all of these reply's not one person has answered my original question so I will ask in another way. On a scale of 1-10, Escapees is on the low end of that scale, with their internet service. If they are so good at everything else they do when it comes to the RV lifestyle, why are they so horrible in this department? This is the question. Thank you for all of your comments.

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I tend to agree with cyberdave that I appreciate availability but it is not required if there is a library or somewhere else within a reasonable distance if I really need it. Trying to have it massive and available in every rig has got to drive up camping rates and that is a bigger issue for me. It means some people are subsidizing it for those that want it that large. I still have minor heartburn when we went to all one fee including electric at some of the escapees parks. I figure me and my solar and cheap ways are subsidizing the guy in the huge RV with the washer and dryer. The park I am in now (not escapees) charges the same fee for every rig whether 30 amp or 50 amp.

2 things, I would not assume that you are thie only one up at that time. Most of us are retired so it could be more than you and of course they could be doing Netflix too. It does sound like you try to plan well to try and make it work for you. A lot of others that use it way more than me will be able to provide more insight on your particular question. I have used the tengo at N. Ranch some years ago and it was adequate for me. I use it at Deming before that and was not as happy but without knowing what I am talking about I think high winds and weather may have been a factor.

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My answer, all the serious RVers I know, at least the ones that use the intenet, have their own internet access and don't depend on CG WiFi so why pay a CG for a service you don't need or care about. If something is important to me I'll take care of it myself rather than depend on someone else. At our winter location where we spend a few months we even purchase a dedicated Mediacom hardwire connection for $12/month. Greg

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If they are so good at everything else they do when it comes to the RV lifestyle, why are they so horrible in this department? This is the question. Thank you for all of your comments.

 

I think that this has been answered to an extent.

 

As Jack pointed out: "As often stated in these types of threads, it is very difficult for a park to provide reliable high speed data everywhere. And almost impossible to provide streaming for the volume of users required. Things have improved, but not at the same speed as demand. The biggest issue for parks is maintaining the equipment. You have to have someone that can solve issues. And believe me, there WILL BE issues, no matter how good the equipment. "

 

So this becomes a business decision for the parks. As you can see from many responses a lot of SKP's have arranged for their own internet service, so having top-of-the-line service available at parks is not an issue or priority for many of us. I imagine that the management at Rainbows End is aware of this and therefore haven't pursued an upgrade. And having a third-party provider like Tengonet eliminates most of the headaches of a park trying to install and maintain their own system. Supply and demand...

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Now, if you were in Asia, you'd probably have the Internet you "need", but the U.S. Is stuck in the 70s for internet connectivity.

I totaly agree with this statement and I have my own little crusade about this. I tell the park owners that looking forward and in anticipation of the millions of Baby boomers that are just now starting to retire that expectations will be much higher for good services.

Wifi being one of them. The parks that do figure out the wifi delivery will be the ones that get our business.

 

The status quo with aging RV parks is unacceptable and the boomers wont use them.....the parks wont survive.

 

If hotels and Motels and restaurants can have good wifi...why not RV parks?

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If they are so good at everything else they do when it comes to the RV lifestyle, why are they so horrible in this department?

Like most businesses, they respond to the wishes of those who are the majority of their market. They use an advisory committee of club members who have no management or ownership connection to the business as a primary guide in what direction they should go. Since the vast majority of fulltimers already have a reliable source of internet access to meet their needs it isn't currently a good use of resources to supply the level of internet that you are seeking. With the new emphasis on attracting younger members, we may see the interest begin to change, so when & if that should happen I have no doubt that we will see changes in this service as well. All you need do is to read back through this thread to see that the demand is not there at this time, but who knows what the future will bring. I am sure that if the current efforts should be successful, it will bring many additions and/or changes.

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Thanks for these last few answers. This Escapees park is really amazing compared to other parks I have been to. I was just surprised that they provided the worse internet service I have seen out of all of the parks I have been to in the last 10 months. I guess you cant be perfect at everything. But they are in fact perfect at everything besides the internet. If the net is not an issue for you, I highly recommend this park.

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Like most businesses, they respond to the wishes of those who are the majority of their market. They use an advisory committee of club members who have no management or ownership connection to the business as a primary guide in what direction they should go. Since the vast majority of fulltimers already have a reliable source of internet access to meet their needs it isn't currently a good use of resources to supply the level of internet that you are seeking. With the new emphasis on attracting younger members, we may see the interest begin to change, so when & if that should happen I have no doubt that we will see changes in this service as well. All you need do is to read back through this thread to see that the demand is not there at this time, but who knows what the future will bring. I am sure that if the current efforts should be successful, it will bring many additions and/or changes.

Kirk, just an FYI. After speaking with alot of the park residents and the staff about this issue. It is hands down the number one compliant that they hear here.

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