If it’s one thing snow bunnies, traveling freelancers, and remote business owners have in common, it’s how and where to get online. Many campgrounds offer WiFi, but many times, it’s painfully slow, operated under arbitrary streaming restrictions where you’re at risk of being booted off, or entirely non-existent.
So what wireless internet options do travelers and RVers have to ensure a constant and reliable connection?
Satellite Internet for RV’s
Primarily targeted towards users who simply don’t have access to a broadband connection, mobile satellite internet should only be considered as a last resort. The basic gist of this type of connection is that a dish is attached to your camper or RV, which then communicates with the carrier’s satellite, thus providing dish network internet.
This can be a viable option for those in very remote areas, but the disadvantages are numerous. For one, maintenance of the satellite is very expensive. At this time, there are only two providers in the United States, HughesNet and ViaSat, that offer satellite internet. In truth, much of their maintenance costs are offset to their customers, resulting in a relatively high monthly bill.
The good thing about satellite is it can work just about anywhere on Earth. The bad thing is physics: everything has to travel 22,000 miles up to the satellite and then 22,000 miles back for the return trip. The speed of light isn’t just a good idea, it’s the law: it means satellite has really high latency, which poses problems for timing-sensitive requirements such as VoIP (Voice-over-IP)/Skype or streaming.
Even worse, inclement weather can put a damper on any streaming activities that you have in mind. Inclement can put a quick end to your intended Game of Thrones binge. For many of us, watching our favorite shows on Netflix or Hulu is one way we unwind after a long day. Plainly put, a satellite Internet network will work for the first week and a half, but will be throttled afterwards under that level of use.
Even under the best of conditions, the high latency, slow connection speeds, and hard data caps of a satellite internet connection will not allow for intensive activity like high-definition streaming, online gaming, or VoIP services.
At most, you’ll be able to check your emails (as long as they don’t contain any large attachments), and that’s really about it. Throw in the fact that your RV and the receiver have to be positioned in such a way that it has line-of-sight with the satellite, and not blocked by trees or mountains, makes it more trouble than it’s worth for the average user.
So what if you’re lucky enough to find a campground that offers WiFi? Could it possibly work for more intensive online activity? Let’s have a look…
So what’s so great about RV park WiFi? For one, it’s a quick connection option for travelers looking to reconnect with loved ones via email after settling in. Even then, it’s not intended as a permanent wireless Internet option designed for heavy use. It’s a good idea to do your research beforehand to see which parks offer WiFi, and then conducting a signal and speed test on-site before choosing to settle in.
As we’ve touched upon earlier, many RV parks put restrictions on users, which could be the result of them employing the bare minimum in equipment and coverage when setting up their wireless network. This typically translates into no data-intensive activities like streaming, watching videos, or online gaming. Even worse, those researching potential campgrounds will likely not find information of those restrictions online.
A crowded RV park can quickly swamp the network, reducing bandwidth and security. To whit, a common question for users is: how to get a better WiFi signal at the campground? Some higher-end RV parks and some users will employ a booster to help elevate their speeds, but the park will still likely impose restrictions on use without addressing security.
If any users are found to be in violation of these imposed restrictions, their wireless device’s MAC address will be flagged and permanently booted off of the network. Try explaining to your children, significant other, or clients that you can’t do what you want to do online because you were booted off the network for purported misuse.
In short, these RV park WiFi networks are great in a pinch, but will not provide the necessary bandwidth, speed, and security to conduct a mobile business or creature comforts like watching a YouTube video or livestream. If the latter is how you unwind after a long day of travel, you’ll likely be out of luck.
So by this point, you’re probably wondering what option is left if one wants to avoid security risks, latency, and restrictions on use. We’re glad you asked…
If you’re an RV traveler or businessperson, the need for a consistent, reliable, unlimited WiFi Internet connection is paramount. Why worry about hard data caps, user restrictions, potential data breaches, weather, and even foliage when you can have a secure, high-speed 4G LTE connection wherever and whenever you need it?
The cool part about having a mobile WiFi network for you RV is that you can turn it on when you need it, connect, and do exactly what you’d like to do, whether that be sharing dancing cat GIFs, watching your favorite streamer, or binging your favorite show when it’s time to bed down for the night. This, in addition to offering more security, increased bandwidth, and lower latency make a mobile WiFi hotspot the best RV Internet service option.
If you’re looking for a wired ethernet connection or beefier Wifi, a discrete modem and dedicated router may be the way to go. If you feel that your daily use may rise to this level, talk to us and we’ll help you figure out the best solution for you.
Planning for travel is already hard enough without having to worry about whether or not inclement weather is going to choke out your satellite connection, or if the campground you’ve been eyeballing will offer a WiFi network that will allow you to do what you have to do, while also worrying about whether the RV next door is stealing your data or bandwidth.
Whether you have children to entertain via YouTube, need to make a conference call with clients, or otherwise run your website and/or business wherever you are, you can safely and securely do so with a mobile WiFi hotspot solution from Unlimited LTE Advanced.
High Speed Internet for Rural Areas
If you’re living in or otherwise visiting a rural area, conventional Internet options can be even more sparse. In many cases, broadband is not available, and it may be hard to push a satellite signal through inclement weather and over rough terrain. So how can a mobile hotspot help?
As long as you’re within an LTE coverage area, a mobile hotspot can help without the need of a wifi booster, extender, antenna, repeater, or any of the other bulky add-ons that may or may not improve your connection speeds at a campground, home office, or what have you.
For example, say that you work/live in your RV full-time, and maintain an online business where you regularly communicate with clients and business partners. At home, you’d typically need a triple monitor desktop, as well as a printer, Chromecast, and Roku to effectively conduct your business.
Trying to conduct even a couple of these activities would either get you booted off the campground’s network or leave your satellite connection struggling to catch up. Just because you happen to live in or passing through a rural location doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t receive the benefits of a steady, reliable Internet connection, whether it’s work or play you have in mind.
An RV WiFi network with one of our mobile hotspot solutions can get you a secure, unlimited 4G LTE connection, wherever you are. At Unlimited LTE Advanced, our equipment is powered by a data plan from a major national carrier, and we’ll work with you to determine which plan and equipment is right for you and your lifestyle.