Whether someone lives full-time in an RV or goes on a short camping trip, they will need the Internet during the camping days for one reason or another. The day-to-day life of modern people largely depends on the Internet. But people who want to get the Internet for RV need to know the best way to get Internet in an RV since they are always on the move.
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Importance of Having Internet for RV
Many people consider the Internet as one of their basic necessities, which is not an exaggeration if you think about modern life. With the increased dependency on the Internet in the modern era, one cannot think of staying in touch with the outside world without it.
People need it for working online, paying bills, shopping, communicating with their family or friends back home, and doing plenty of other things. Whether it is entertainment or checking the weather, nothing is possible without the Internet. Hence, RV Internet solutions are crucial for regular campers and boondockers.
What Are the Best Options for RV Internet Service?
When it comes to choosing the Internet for campers, people have a couple of choices. Most motorhome users can go for any of these RV Internet options.
1. Cellular or Wireless Internet for RV
Many campers consider cellular to be the best Internet for RV while they are on the road. It is not only cost-effective but sometimes even faster than cable modems. With the help of a smartphone or MiFi, one can create a mobile hotspot in the RV. Then, they are free to connect multiple devices and utilize the Internet.
To get the maximum out of this option, users have to choose a mobile network carrier that offers the most widespread coverage on your camping location at the cheapest rate. Some of the popular cellular internet providers are:
Verizon – This tops the list of the reputed cellular companies that offer maximum coverage across the US.
AT&T – The next name on the list is AT&T. Although it covers a large part of the country, its LTE speeds are lower than expected.
T-Mobile – This is the right option for those who want super-fast Internet. Since its coverage area is not as comprehensive as the first two operators, verify if its connection is available in the areas where you might want to get the service.
Sprint – If someone mostly stays in the cities, Sprint is likely to be the better option.
Pros and Cons of Cellular Internet
The benefits of using this connection are its cost-effectiveness and the highest potential speeds. Users also do not have to spend any money or effort on the maintenance of this service.
But most packages of cellular Internet include bandwidth throttling once the users reach the monthly or yearly quota. Also, no company will provide guaranteed coverage to the camping area. For that, one may have to get a cellular network booster for amplifying the signal. Those who have multiple phones can get packages from different providers for uninterrupted service.
2. Satellite RV Internet Access
People who love to camp in secluded areas will find a satellite Internet connection handy. Since the signal comes from the space-located satellite, the Internet is available everywhere without any interruption. Users only have to make sure that there is a clear line of sight to the southern sky.
Most of the satellite Internet providers offer TV signals and VoIP telephone connectivity with an Internet connection. But to get these extra features, one may have to buy additional hardware. Besides DirecTV and DISH, there are other prominent satellite service providers, such as:
Pros and Cons of Satellite Internet
Campers with high Internet usage always find satellite Internet perfect for their needs. At the same time, the coverage should not be an issue if there is a clear view of the southern sky.
It will also cost you a large amount of money for this high speed Internet for RV. Depending on the satellite you use, the initial hardware setup alone may cost around $1,300 or more. When it comes to monthly plans, the minimum package will start at $60. Its hardware is also heavy and requires more maintenance.
Upon reaching the daily, weekly, or monthly limits, users will experience lower speed. The service quality will also decrease during peak hours and inclement weather. If someone is planning to get this service, they should have basic technical and troubleshooting knowledge.
3. Free Wi-Fi RV Internet Access
If staying 24/7 online is not your topmost priority or if you are not willing to spend any money on the Internet, this is the ideal choice. It is quite commonplace to find wireless hotspots these days. Likewise, one may easily find one near their camping locations.
The best thing about this connection is that there is no need for cables or other heavyweight infrastructure. All one needs is a device with a Wi-Fi card or adapter, preferably a computer, to stay online from the travel trailer.
Pros and Cons of Public or Campground Wi-Fi
The prime advantage of using this Internet for RV is that it is free. Users do not have to spend any money to get this free service that campgrounds offer. As a result, users do not have to worry about getting the Internet when they can access any public Wi-Fi.
Among its downsides, there is no guarantee of a stable connection inside the trailer or having the optimum latency if the camping site or area is overcrowded. You may also have to spend money on devices like Wi-Fi Range Extender to get the required speed.
Most importantly, no public Wi-Fi is fully secured. So, you should not use any open or public connection if you can afford other options.
Motorhome users have multiple options when it comes to the Internet connection. All the available options have their advantages and disadvantages. So, to get the best Internet for RV, you should consider all the points along with your requirements.