The Internet is a powerful tool. We live in a high tech age where connecting with the rest of the world is easier and faster than ever before. There’s a mindboggling amount of information at our fingertips which we can use in countless ways: Learn a new language, read classic literature or debate the finer points of quantum physics.
But yes, we’re as guilty as the next person of watching cat videos and posting yet another…. (getting lost following links on Wikipedia). The time and place for putting the smartdown down certainly exists, but we don’t think a cruise holiday has to be it. After all, who wouldn’t want to upload the occasional holiday snap from envy-inducing locations around the world?
As it happens, today (29 October) is World Internet Day and so in honour of this ridiculous holiday, we’ve compiled a rather useful list of cruise ship Wifi and connectivity.
Royal Caribbean offers the fastest connection at sea with its Wi-Fi service, Voom, said to be six times faster than any other internet at sea. Selected ships also benefit from coverage from network provider and satellite operator O3b Networks. This means getting connected with Royal Caribbean is as close to surfing at home as you’re going to get.
Customers can choose from ‘surf only’ or a ‘surf + stream’ package up to five devices.
Prices start at $12.99 per device per day, with discounts available for multiple devices.
In April 2016 MSC announced improved connectivity across its entire fleet and new internet packages to accommodate the needs of holidaymakers. MSC promise ‘fast, reliable access to the web and simple, easy to use packages’.
Choose the Social Package for one device access to social networks 24/7 at $4.50 per day or $16.50 for a 7-night cruise.
A moderate access package is available for $11 per day or $33 for a 7-night cruise. With this guests can access social networks and surf the web on two devices.
Finally, the Streamer Package provides full, unlimited internet, access to social networks and streaming for $22 per day or $66 for a 7-night cruise.
NCL were first to introduce the onboard Internet Café in 1999. Right now, other cruiselines have overtaken them in terms of internet speed and accessibility. They had promised to deliver a new SpeedNet Wi-Fi network by July 2016 but all’s gone quiet on that project since the deadline has passed.
Current prices vary but start at $24.99 per day for cruises of 13 days or longer.
Costa customers can choose between a pay per use scheme or from a number of prepaid service plans. Costa’s owner Carnival Corporation last year announced a slash in prices meaning customers can potentially save large sums on money in comparison to the old plans.
Prices start at $5 a day for a social package, $16 for a basic web package with some bandwidth restriction or $25 for a premium package suitable for video calls and music streaming.
Travellers on Celebrity ships can take advantage of the Xcelerate wifi network, a recently enhanced high speed internet service. From your own device or from one of the ships workstations you can surf the web, use Skype and also video streaming services.
Unlimited use costs from $140 per person for cruises up to nine days and $199 per person for cruises of 10 days or more.