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  • Internet access at sea!?

    Hi folks,

    I'm sure many of you will have heard this many times before, but...

    Whats the deal with internet access whilst at sea? I've had a search on the web but its mostly US websites or articles from 3 or 4 years ago.
    Is it at a cost? Also, I can imagine there will be no access on smaller vessels..?


    I'm hoping I'd be able to use skype to stay in touch with those back home

  • #2
    Depends entirely on your company. I had text only e-mail but that was it. Some people had none whatsover and some had a slow connection where streaming etc was restricted. Size of the vessel doesn't really matter, its really a matter of whether or not the company wants to spend money on it. For example most people I know in the North Sea had internet and sky telly whereas I was on deep sea containers and had text e-mail and nothing else.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by EH75 View Post
      Depends entirely on your company. I had text only e-mail but that was it. Some people had none whatsover and some had a slow connection where streaming etc was restricted. Size of the vessel doesn't really matter, its really a matter of whether or not the company wants to spend money on it. For example most people I know in the North Sea had internet and sky telly whereas I was on deep sea containers and had text e-mail and nothing else.

      Ok cheers, looks like I'd have to stock up on PS Vita games before leaving

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      • #4
        Can't speak for any other companies but on the Maersk ships there is email all the time with a crew address and kind of internet. Kind of in that you get an allowance, so no skype video or youtube or any of that **** but facebook, email, twitter, news etc is all alright. Pretty slow, wifi is pretty bad (generally have to sit in the smokeroom) but it's better that a slap in the face with a wet haddock.

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        • #5
          Every company I have worked for has had wifi onboard , speed depends on time of day etc. I've always worked for UK based companies though.

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          • #6
            Internet!? On ship!?

            Bloody luxury!
            I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

            All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

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            • #7
              some of the cruise ships have got massive bandwidth available to them with their C band antennas and you'd imagine they would give crew free personal email at the very least, but they don't.

              The smaller ships I've been on had a VSAT with a commercial provider and free internet for crew but its not such a great connection if you go deep sea.
              Former TH cadet with experience of cruise ships, buoy tenders, research ships and oil tankers

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              • #8
                I worked on a passenger ferry with both free wifi for the crew (whilst in port), and free passenger wifi when we were sailing. The research I was on had free internet access from the computer in the library and computer in the conference room. The yacht I'm joining on Monday afternoon has free wifi. I don't think I'd survive on a ship with no internet access!
                "Did I tell you about my theory about sailors? Sailors are the finest people in the world."

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by effiestephy View Post
                  I worked on a passenger ferry with both free wifi for the crew (whilst in port), and free passenger wifi when we were sailing. The research I was on had free internet access from the computer in the library and computer in the conference room. The yacht I'm joining on Monday afternoon has free wifi. I don't think I'd survive on a ship with no internet access!
                  If the crew only had free wifi in port, why didn't they just use the passenger wifi when sailing.

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                  • #10
                    I had internet on my last ship (RoRo Pax) free wifi for crew and passengers. Was only one in fleet that had was a trial to see if it worked before possibly fitting it on all the fleet.

                    But you should see this sort of thing as a bonus and be prepared to do without for long periods of time.

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                    • #11
                      I foresee a day when Internet onboard will be a basic right, instead of a luxury. Even on the cargo ships I was on as a cadet in the early 2000's we had free e-mail access, cruise ships have had internet access for a while, but recent upgrades with MTN across the Carnival fleet are seeing a massive increase in speed. The standby vessels I sailed on offered free e-mail, and paid for wifi. All of the yachts I've been on have had high speed V-Sat connections, far superior then any other vessels at sea.

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                      • #12
                        I understand that all Maersk fleet have free internet acces on bord. I ll see that soon .

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Levent10 View Post
                          I understand that all Maersk fleet have free internet acces on bord. I ll see that soon .
                          Most Maersk ships do but it is limited to an allocation per month per ship ... so streaming is definitely out :-)

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                          • #14
                            Does anyone have any idea how much is paid by the companies for internet on ships?

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by internationalapple View Post
                              Does anyone have any idea how much is paid by the companies for internet on ships?
                              Surprisingly not that much. I can't remember the exact costs off hand, but the monthly cost for the VSAT connection is relatively small, maybe around $2,500 a month, however you do save on the phone calls to the ship as you can get VOIP lines with it.

                              The installation cost can be fairly high though as we had to install a new antenna on the monkey island.
                              I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

                              All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

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