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melissa.h.ellsworth August 16th, 2014 09:53 PM

Wifi vs LTE?
We will be cruising on the Breeze in October. My husband has a job that necessitates that he has access to the internet pretty much all the time. Most of his internet time will be spent reading and responding to emails. However he may need to do more then that if his data base on their local server goes down. I have been trying to do research to figure out which is going to be our better option-the onboard wifi which I'm guessing will ensure better connectivity or through LTE on our AT&T phone package. Has anyone used one or the other of these option recently? I've read quiet a bit from 2012 and 2013 but haven't seen anything more recent and knowing how quickly technology changes I'm wondering if the service has improved on either front. Does LTE even work onboard and does it work on the days at sea? How was the speed on both options? Does anyone have an opinion on the better value? Obviously we want him to spend as little time as possible taking care of work and so want to make sure we get the fastest connection for the best value. Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated!


Mike M August 17th, 2014 03:27 AM

You will need to use the ship's Internet package. 4G LTE is not available on board. It "may" be available in port but depending on the ports it is doubtful.

Take care,

green_rd August 17th, 2014 10:16 AM

The bit rate is not all that fast on board. Every thing goes through satellite. Sounds like hubby needs to train backup so he can enjoy vacation. You'll have to be careful to not spend more on wifi than you did on your cruise.

zydecocruiser August 17th, 2014 11:44 AM

I would say most VPN software won't work and if transferring large amounts of data you may encounter timeouts.

Throughput is best when others aren't doing much, like the middle of the night or when in port and everyone else is ashore enjoying their vacation.

Of course, in port, you can likely find a faster, less expensive option on land, but security could still be an issue.

Dave Beers August 17th, 2014 02:49 PM

Typical latency using current cruise ship satellite internet is 750 milliseconds. Compare that to the typical latency of under ~80 milliseconds for a home DSL or cable modem. A way to think of cruise ship internet is like using an old 128k to 256k telephone modem, with sometimes higher speeds (but too much higher) late at night or early in the morning.

As said by others, timeouts are common. The internet also goes offline on ships, and this can sometimes happen more than once a day.

Even with their most cost-effective plan, Carnival charges 40 cents per minute of usage if you buy a 250 minute package. The basic rate is 75 cents per minute. And from experience I can tell you that you'll spend more than a few of those 250 minutes looking at a screen waiting for something to happen/load/send.

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