Summer is here! This means it’s time to dig out the suitcases and head off on a summer holiday. Although many of us are hoping to go off-grid, this doesn’t mean we should be completely disconnected from reality — or the internet. The last thing you want to worry about is how to find Wi-Fi when travelling or dealing with terribly slow and unreliable WiFi, wasting your holiday time looking at a blank screen trying to get local information or staying in touch with your family and friends.
The internet has become part of our daily lives and many of us can’t imagine our lives without it anymore. There’s no surprise that the UK’s average screen time per day is five hours. We need an internet connection while travelling for so many things and so many different reasons.
Luckily, you’ve got several options for getting online when travelling, and we think at least one of these options should work for you!
Mobile broadband service
Mobile broadband allows you to stay connected to the internet, even when you’re travelling. Whether you’re at the airport, or in a hotel, you can enjoy a reliable and fast internet connection. The good news is that there is no obligation to apply roaming charges post-Brexit. However, many providers have applied charges and it’s important to check with your network provider to ensure there’s no nasty surprises. Charges can depend on how much data you use, so make sure you’re not going to feel too restricted with what your network provider has on offer.
And, most importantly, you’ll depend on mobile coverage wherever you are. If you go camping in the countryside, for example, you might want to check the coverage maps for the area first.
Your hotel or guest house WiFi
Most likely, your hotel or guest house will have free WiFi. In terms of performance, some may or may not be very good but sometimes you can choose to upgrade to a faster service. You can safely use it for some casual browsing or using messaging apps like Messenger and WhatsApp, but if you’re planning to log in to your bank account or work, it’s recommended to set up and install a VPN first. The downside is your connectivity doesn’t extend beyond the boundaries of the property.
Buy a SIM card locally
If you are travelling abroad and you’re unhappy with your provider’s data plans, buy yourself a local SIM card. Most probably you’ll be able to purchase it right there at the airport. Make sure you do a little research and check their coverage, the validity of the SIM card, and how much a top-up is going to cost you. In addition, before your trip check that your phone is not network locked and it can work with a SIM card from a different mobile network.
Use your phone as a hotspot
Don’t forget also that your phone can be set up as a wireless hotspot, enabling you to connect your laptop or tablet to the internet wherever you are. This works in the same way as a separate mobile broadband plan and can be a good option only if you’ve got a good data allowance. Make sure you keep an eye on your data use because it will be costly if you exceed what your plan allows.
It’s essential to ensure you have a reliable internet connection during your journey, so that you’re not worried about staying connected to friends and family. Choose the best option for you by taking into consideration your destination country, budget, and number of people travelling. Hopefully, one of the options above will help you get online and avoid paying too much for your internet.
As always, we’re here for you! If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.