Today, nearly everyone has a wireless router in their home creating a local Wi-Fi network, and most social gathering locations including every Starbucks across the country have free Wi-Fi available for their patrons. Additionally, many cities have started including free Wi-Fi zones including downtown Denver, Colorado and Minneapolis, Minnesota.
But, what do you do if you aren’t lucky enough to be in one of these cities? You will need to create your own mobile hotspot or use a satellite connection. Here are four ways you can accomplish this:
Use Your Cell Phone
The easiest and quickest way to get mobile Wi-Fi is with your cell phone. Most smartphones can be converted into mobile hotspots for multiple devices with a limited range. If this is your preferred option, make sure you have a phone that can handle the strain on the battery as well as an appropriate data addition on your plan so you don’t get hit with crazy overage charges and hidden fees.
Purchase a Hotspot Device
If you don’t want to use your cell phone, you can always get a stand-alone Wi-Fi hotspot device. These work similarly to your phone hotspot by creating a localized area of Internet access around the device that can handle multiple phones, tablets, laptops or whatever else. You will have to have an accompanying data plan with one of the local cellular companies for data access with the device, so make sure you do your research and pick the best one for you.
Get an International Hotspot
While most phones today have international roaming plans, the data access charges can be extreme. Most major cities abroad have local Wi-Fi hotspots similar to coffee shops in the states, but they may be few and far between. The alternative is to pick up a pre-paid international Mi-Fi hotspot like the XCom Global. All you have to do is let them know which country you are going to, and they will send you a device pre-loaded with a SIM card for that area. With the case and two batteries included, you can easily get through an entire day even when connecting multiple devices. The hotspot is much more affordable than cellular roaming plans and, it works in the 44 countries where XCom has towers.
Buy a Satellite Phone
On the occasions where you are nowhere near a cell tower, a satellite phone like the Iridium Go! by Roadpost can connect directly to a global satellite network. These phones work from anywhere on the planet and provide you with a local Wi-Fi network for high-speed Internet access on up to five devices. The standard battery gives you over five hours of talk time, is built to military grade ruggedness and is small enough to fit in your pocket.
Whatever your needs and wherever you are going, make sure you are prepared and can stay connected. Whether you just want to keep up to date on current events or quickly and reliably connect with your friends and family, these four options are sure to help you from anywhere in the world.