This is a big question during a road trip in the United States: how to stay connected? Nowadays, more and more people want to keep Internet access, share their adventure on social networks, and communicate with their loved ones, in Europe or in the USA. But roaming charges are often a barrier to this. First thing to know: telephony and the Internet are not cheap in the USA. In this huge country, data packages are higher than in Europe.
The first question to ask yourself before taking action: Do I need internet and telephone during a road-trip in the United States? Whether for work or personal use, some people want to stay connected absolutely everywhere. We are part of it. To share with you our road-trips, to answer you, having H24 data had become an obligation.
But sharing was not the only reason. Having data (and the phone) also allowed us:
- To find our way back when we were lost
- To find places very precisely in certain cities
- To recognize certain places before reaching them
- Rarely mislead us about restaurants. Thank you Yelp
- To check the opening hours (of a Walmart for example)
- Call to book a restaurant or visit
- Not to die when we got bored in Bluff
In brief, it made our lives easier and we did not regret the investment we made. We even feel that we have saved money by spending a little. During our last trips we tested several solutions, which we will explain to you right after.
First advice: if you want to avoid exceeding the fatal fixed price, remember of course to disconnect the “data abroad”.
Have a Wi-Fi hotspot
Last solution we tested: the mobile Wi-Fi hotspot. What is it about? It is a small Wi-Fi router the size of a pack of cigarettes that you can take everywhere in your pocket. You turn it on whenever you want to connect to the Internet. For that, we had booked with, a Spanish company based in Santander, and we received the router a few days before our departure via UPS. In the package, the router, a small case, instructions for use and a charger. Check my-webspot.com for more about pocket Wi-Fi in the USA.
We could use it as soon as we left the airport. The company offers 1, 3 or 7 GB packages depending on your needs. We advise you to take an additional battery (7 euros), or even a car charger (3 euros).
The positive point is that it is easy to use. You connect to it like a traditional Wi-Fi network. And so you can use it for your phone, your tablet, your computer (Up to eight devices). On the negative side, it’s a dry package so if you make it to the end, you’re cut off. But you can request an extension remotely. You also need to monitor the battery and finally, unlike the phone SIM, you are not archi-connected and you do not have the calls included.
It allowed us to work easily while roaming, even from the car, with quality high-speed Wi-Fi.
The negative point: readers then called on this company and the feedback was not good. Box arrived late and after-sales service non-existent. We are looking for another company to offer you.
Rates: 116 euros for 1 month at 1GB, 124.5 euros for 1 month at 3GB, 140 euros for 1 month at 7GB, 78.5 euros for 15 days at 1GB, 87 euros for 15 days at 3GB, 103 euros for 15 days at 7GB. Free delivery if you book 15 days in advance.
The +: the hotspot allows you to connect up to 8 devices. If you are travelling with your family, it is a good solution
The -: the battery that needs to be recharged. You should also contact the company if you reach the end of your package to increase it. For calls, you have to use Skype or WhatsApp
For whom is this? For families who want to connect with others. Also for those who need a more punctual internet, without being connected H24, to work or answer emails for example. For short road-trips as well