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 I've just finished a long trip and it's time for me to rethink how I use the internet on overseas trips. It actually ending up costing me a lot more by not buying a data plan and relying solely on Wi-Fi. This trip my plan was to use Wi-Fi on my phone and a small laptop. I found that Wi-Fi was surprisingly pretty hard to find in parts of Europe and Japan. When I did find it, there often  was a block on VOIP services .Also, Wi-Fi was slow a lot of times and kicked me off after short periods of time. Because of a lost passport and a ferry strike, my plans changed .Bus tickets, hotels, train tickets and ferry tickets cost me more money in person than online.I didn't have Wi-Fi  issues in the US or Canada, but next time I go overseas, I'll buy a data plan.


Please share your experiences on using Wi-Fi overseas and what has worked best for you. Thanks!





If you want a thing done, ask a busy man.


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Last edited by Travel Rob
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I have not been to Japan, but generally my travel experience with internet access has been much more positive than yours.  I've generally had good luck with getting on line in Europe, South America and even Southern Africa.  Once in a while the internet might be down at a place I'm staying at, but usually it's quickly repaired.  Exceptions to this are very rural areas, like in Patagonia and where I'm heading next week, Yellowstone National Park.  There is really not internet available at most places in such remote areas.


We bought a data plan for one of our cell phones when my wife and I visited Sicily this spring.  It was very handy to have this, even just to use google maps to find a destination and navigate us there.  I don't do much calling when I travel so I really don't need the phone services.  If I do, I have skype on my laptop and use that.  I have only rarely had bandwidth problems with VOIP, but it can happen and it's frustrating when it does.


Hopefully this internet issue is not a developing trend.  It's become a vital part of our lives and staying in touch with friends and family are important.

Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

One problem I had was the places I stayed at had no Wi-Fi , so I noticed the lack of public wi-fi a lot more than on other trips. In Japan, besides the airports, Starbucks and 7-11, I had rarely could find Wi-fi and they blocked my VOIP phone, which I don't remember from previous trips.


In Europe it wasn't much better and even some major train stations were lacking Wifi.

I talked to a lot people in Europe and heard the same feedback about lack of Wi-Fi .  

If you want a thing done, ask a busy man.

Yes this trip some places I stayed that I thought I'd have internet didn't, so I really noticed the public Wi- Fi. Also that ferry strike happened when I already checked out and left me scrambling to find a different route. So a data plan for me would of been really worth the money.

If you want a thing done, ask a busy man.

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