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We will be full timing it early next year and I'm researching internet providers for the RV. I know Verizon has a "hot spot" and I'll research that but does anyone have any ideas on what has worked best for you? We have set up our google e-mail addresses.

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Welcome to the forum! We have been with Verizon for about 15 years as full timers and have had very good service. There have been places where there is no service at all with any provider, but normally if anyone has a signal, we do! We use smart phones and the Mi-Fi for the computer and take advantage of Wi-Fi when available. Good luck in your investigations.

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We have two outstanding sources of such information for RVers among the Escapee membership and based upon seminars by both which we have attended at Escapades, we highly recommend both as solid information sources. Technomadia are excellent sources for all sorts of tech info that includes internet and cell service. The Geeks on Tour are in similar business but just a little different direction for their income generation side. Both have subscriptions that are very good resources and at a low cost.

 

There are actually several options which can work well for an RV traveler and what is best depends upon your style of travel and where you choose to stay. Most popular at present is cellular internet which can be done successfully in several different ways. We too have used the Verizon access plans and were fairly happy with it at the time, but no cellular internet will be available everywhere. Based upon advice from Technomadia, we have recently moved to the use of a larger data plan for our cell phones and then use them as hotspots for our computers when on line and we also do much online via our "smart" phones. We have chosen to use a "shared data" plan from AT&T but in our experience neither AT&T or Verizon are everywhere so it could be debated which is better. We have been in places where neither one had any signal.

 

For several years when fulltime we traveled with a portable dish internet system and in my opinion that is still the most available way to have internet on the road but may not be the most cost effective. We used one of the portable devices and it worked well most of the time. They are effected by some weather and there are places that tall trees and high ridges can make it impossible to find the satellite. If you plan to spend a lot of time far in out in the remote areas this is by far the best answer available.

 

For those who spend most of their time in commercial RV parks it is quite possible to travel without portable internet and to depend upon available Wifi for service. We have done that also for 5 months last summer and it was only minimally inconvenient, as long as we didn't do a lot of work on our website. It is quite easy to find commercial RV parks that have it free or for a small fee and some state parks are now providing it, like most in TX. We also found that all McDonald's, most Burger King's, the majority of restaurants, many Walmarts, all Lowe's, and a host of other businesses now have free Wifi available if you go to it. McDonald's seem to have no objection to your coming in to use their signal and staying a long time, buying nothing as long as you do so in slack periods. Many times we have just parked in the parking lot at Lowe's and done our internet thing. We chose to do that because we were spending the summer in a volunteer position which included free Wifi.

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I am running my software development business out of my RV. Moved to full timer in April with a full WiFi network in my RV. After doing some research I can share a couple of things. As others have shared Verizon is your best network for wide spread availability. I moved all my cell phone and data access to Verizon. The Hot Spot devices are all good options but if you have higher bandwidth needs or even great availability I would recommend you look at SinglePoint (http://www.yoursinglepoint.com/). This is not inexpensive, spent about $2,000 to install it but service has been great. Plans start at 10GB/month so if your needs are not that large go with the simpler approaches..

 

Mike

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We have the Mifi jetpack from Verizon. We went to a local verizon store and the data cost was LESS than any plan showing on the Verizon website. We did not get any special discounts. You may want to check multiple sources before signing up for any plan.

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We have Verizon and have had great coverage during our travels. We use our smartphones as hot spots utilizing a program called PdaNet. It's a one time purchase, less than $10, and the program works in the background and uses your data allowance. We don't care to pay $30/month for a device rental to do the same. So far it has worked fine for us over the last 5 + years of travel

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I have found that Verizon's hot spot has worked very well for

us. I also use it in hotel rooms, I travel a lot for work, were they want to charge for in room internet.

The speed is faster then the Hughes.net that I have at home. Good Luck

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We happen to use Verizon, because it has always had the best data coverage and speeds for those that travel nationwide. But the ATT network has come a long way in the past couple of years. I would say it is approaching equivalency in most places. So if you HAVE TO HAVE connection you should have one of each. I still prefer to have a Verizon hotspot or aircard, and then I'd use an ATT phone with hotspot capability for the backup to that. But that is ONLY if you NEED to be connected all the time. Because it will cost more than just sticking with a single vendor. A lot more.

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Pete & Pat - Do you have to pay a monthly fee to use the Jetpack? I would be willing to pay a one time fee to purchase a jetpack or mifi device. When I look up plans it seems that Verizon wants $30/month to use a device as a WiFi hot spot and it uses the data you already paid for. As it stands now I paid a $10 one time fee to download PDA net and it turns my phone into a hot spot without any additional monthly fee. It uses the data I already paid for. So, are you paying the extra $30 to use the jetpack or since you purchased it outright there is no extra charge to use it?

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horizon36: Remember that the current plan is the More Everything Plan from Verizon, where using the phone as a hotspot is included, but you pay for each GB of data for everything and also have unlimited minutes and texts. There are also hotspot only plans, $50 for 5GB with $10/GB overage charges, for Jetpacks. All other plans are old grandfathered plans or special plans to keep customers, some with unlimited data, some with 6GB per phone, some with limited minutes and texts. For these plans it costs $30 a month to hotspot the phone and you are technically in violation of your user agreement to use PDAnet, though that does not seem to be enforced. A new customer cannot get a phone that is not on More Everything.

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With the Jetpack, you pay a monthly fee for the extra phone line, the Jetpack is a separate phone number. Then the data you use is added to your monthly plan. Our Jetpack cost $25.00 per month plus data. We have the Everything Plan so when we canceled the Jetpack we saved $25.00 a month and now just use the smartphone as a hotspot with no additional charges other than data usage. The old software that allows you to connect as a hotspot or tether is pretty much not needed anymore unless you have some type of older plan. Most major carriers no longer charge to tether or use the phone as a hotspot. Chuck

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It can be expensive but we need good internet access for everything and we use it across the country. We have two smart phones and the Verizon jetpack. More everything unl talk and text 40GB of data. 238.00 per month. We need it, We use it, We pay for it. We have not been disappointed with the service.

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It can be expensive but we need good internet access for everything and we use it across the country. We have two smart phones and the Verizon jetpack. More everything unl talk and text 40GB of data. 238.00 per month. We need it, We use it, We pay for it. We have not been disappointed with the service.

I have this exact same setup. At about the same price.I got on the double data plan when they offered it around the time Millenicom went under. While I would like to pay less, having decent Internet with all the data I can use is pretty much "priceless" to me.

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I have this exact same setup. At about the same price.I got on the double data plan when they offered it around the time Millenicom went under. While I would like to pay less, having decent Internet with all the data I can use is pretty much "priceless" to me.

 

x3 -- we have same 40GB Verizon plan, but it's real easy to get used to having a lot of data . . . I'm at an RV park this summer which has suddenLink broadband via their cable system . . . so for $45/mon we get 250GB month @ about 45Mbps.

 

Once in a while the cable goes out so we switch back to Verizon service, and our Verizon USB stick glows red as we burn through the data. Got to be careful.

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I have this exact same setup. At about the same price.I got on the double data plan when they offered it around the time Millenicom went under. While I would like to pay less, having decent Internet with all the data I can use is pretty much "priceless" to me.

We also got in on the double data plan when they offered it. Same here we would like to pay less but as you say the service is priceless.

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