General discussion

Motorhome wifi?

We'll be traveling by motorhome soon, with no particular stops or stays planned. We've got a Dell Inspiron 6000 wireless laptop that we've used via local wifi signals, but we'd like to know if we can set up our own travelling, "always on" wifi access.

We've read a lot of bits and pieces, but haven't been able to put the picture together.

How can we stay connected wherever we go without having to depend on others' hotspots?


Discussion is locked

Reply to: Motorhome wifi?
PLEASE NOTE: Do not post advertisements, offensive materials, profanity, or personal attacks. Please remember to be considerate of other members. If you are new to the CNET Forums, please read our CNET Forums FAQ. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Reporting: Motorhome wifi?
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
- Collapse -
No such thing. However in some areas you can use EVDO.

Look up EVDO on to discover what that is. It's not wifi. Wifi is not a system for covering the US.


- Collapse -
you gotta pay to play

all the major celluar service providers offer cards to connect to the internet however there pretty costly by/month

- Collapse -
Cross Country Wirelessly

I was, until year and a half ago, a cross country truck driver, and I did exactly what you are looking to do. I used Verizon Wireless for my internet service. You can either get a card for your laptop or get a kit that plugs your phone into the laptop and uses that for it's service. Both are fine for internet. But the card isn't cheap and you will have an early termination fee if you cancel it within a year or two, depending on the contract. The service to plug in your cell phone to the laptop is only an added feature and cancelable at any time. Remember, this is Verizon, so I do not have info on the other carriers. I went coast to coast and you will not have service everywhere, escpecially very remote places like West Texas, but for the most part, if you are on the interstate, you will have service better than 85 or 90% of the time, in my experience. Also, this works regardless of wether or not you are moving. For those times when you do not have service, if you are going to be staying in hotels, you can pick up rechargable dial up kits at any truck stop. You just install it on your laptop and it will us the phone line in the hotel to dial up a 800 number to get you access. it will then look for a local number in the area you are in. If there is a local number, you will get about 3 times the minutes or uses for the same amount of money as the 800. Basically, if you get 600 minutes for $20 on the 800# you will get about 1800 minutes on the local number for the same $20.

Remember that whichever service you use for the internet you will either need the proper card for the laptop you are buying or the proper phone that has an available mobile office kit to hook it up to the laptop.
Good luck.

- Collapse -
Thank you for sharing Kate

Your info helped out. Didn't know you could connect a cell phone to your computer to get a wireless signal.Thanks. I travel in an RV.Bill

- Collapse -
wireless here and there

I leave my Dell Inspiron 1150 on all the time, didn't do anything special. I have a Belkin external wifi adaptor that sits in the window of our RV. I think you will be surprised at how many networks you will find. Many libraries have them, colleges do, schools do, chamber of commerce in various places, some truck stops. Just leave the 'puter on and see what you find. From what I've found, most libraries don't mind if you bring your computer in and have a seat to use the 'net. Been surfin' crosscountry for 3 years. There are also newsgroups online about it. Google "wifi access" and see what you find. Good luck and happy hunting.

- Collapse -
Wifi all over

If you are planning on staying at campsites...many have wifi these days. My parents just came back from an RV trip. I got them a book on campsites in the area they were travelling....including which ones had wifi! Some you have to pay for, others are free. You should get something like that to help you find and stay somewhere that will have wifi. And perhaps purchase a wifi wherever you are, you can see if there is an open network somewhere (without having to turn on your laptop).


- Collapse -
3 options

The way I see it you have three options here.

1. Drive around until you find hotspots or unsecured networks which is less than ideal

2.Buy a USB modem from one of the major mobile broadband providers (Verizon, Sprint or AT&T). This will have you connected in virtually every place you go to and will only run approx $60/mth.

3. Look into "tethering your laptop to your cell phone" (google it) this is a method of "hijacking" your cell phone modem and making it act as a wireless modem for your laptop.

Out of the three, the USB modem will be the most reliable as the others depend on outside factors.

CNET Forums

Forum Info