Hello, last june we were on explorer. We took our laptop, to email with a family member who was house/dog sitting. We were on 7 day western carib. They charged us $100 for "unlimited" usage. Well, it was slow as molasses. One time we spent about 30 minutes, no joke, trying to just get a connection to the internet. Out of the MANY times we tried to get a connection, we only got connected 4 or 5 times. My husband thought maybe the ocean lab on board was hogging the internet connection, or whatever. We went back to where we got it from, & told them how much trouble we were having. After suggesting we hooked it up wrong, and even coming up to our cabin to make sure it was connected right, they told us to keep track of the attempts to connect and if they were successful or not. Well, that got to be ridiculous! We turned it in early, and asked for a partial refund, and got some $ back. I can't remember how much $ we got back. Good luck. Ask RCI for a partial refund, if you have a hassle. I don't know what experiences other people have had, just mine. Hopefully Tom Ogg can give you and me some pointers. Good luck and have a great cruise. Lil, Lori
I always get the in-cabin access on RCI's Voyager and Radiance class ships. It is a great deal. Here is what I found works well.
Disconnect your telephone in the cabin when using Internet access and it makes it a thousand time easier to use. Also, because it is a hard wire connection, you are not using a wi-fi hot spot, so VOIP works. Download SKYPE (completely free download www.SKYPE.com) and purchase a digital headset and you can call anyone you want at anytime from your notebook computer for free (if they use SKYPE) or for only 1.6 euro cents per minute SKYPE Out (to call a land line anywhere int he world)
On my last cruise on the Brilliance of the Seas I had folks coming to my cabin at all time to make telephone calls to the folks back home. It works great.
Ooops, left off an important tid-bit. I don't have a laptop. I am looking for the most economical way to keep in touch with family and make sure everything is okay @ home.
I thought there were "public access" computers" that we could use and pay for usage time?
Cell phone vendor said 1) e-mail is most economical method, then 2) messages via cell phone (when you are @ ports and can receive messages), then 3) cell phone calls to each other, then 4) most expensive seems to be approx. $8 rate to use ship's phone.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I don't know much about the phone cards @ islands. THANKS!!
Yes, there is an Internet Cafe on the Mariner of the Seas. They do have bulk packages, but the access is slow making communicating by e-mail somewhat expensive. It would be fine for casual e-mails however. Be sure that you know your user name and password for you e-mail account. There is a great Internet Cafe in Grand Cayman right on the water. Just turn left when you exit the tender wharf and walk for a few hundred yards...you can't miss it. They also have telephones there, as well. In Cozumel, there are dozens of Internet Cafes and communication centers that you can use to make telephone calls and access the Internet. One word of caution. If you see pay telephones with signs saying "Call the USA Here!" run the other way.
We were just down in Mexico for a surfing trip and my son was abloe to text message the entire time. I couldn't believe it, because we were in the boonies.
Prepaid International telephone cards are very easy to use. Some have chips in them and you simply insert the card into the appropriate slot and others have a toll free number that you call and an account number that gives you however many minutes you purchased. The trick is to dial you country code first (the US is 001) and then the area code and telephone number.