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Apr 10th, 2014, 07:40 PM
  #1
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Internet access

Need some advice for getting internet access while travelling around the South Island in NZ in October.
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Apr 11th, 2014, 08:14 AM
  #2
 
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Most hotels and plenty of restaurants/bars, etc. around the south island have WiFi that their guests/customers can access. We spent a month traveling around NZ and never had a problem finding internet access.
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Apr 11th, 2014, 04:05 PM
  #3
 
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If all else fails, check the local library - free.
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Apr 12th, 2014, 07:26 PM
  #4
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Thank you, yes we had seen there was internet at hotels but there were very few that didn't charge. The library access is always OK too as long as we are somewhere when it is open. My husband's elderly mother frets terribly if she can't contact us so we need to Skype her frequently.
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Apr 13th, 2014, 08:04 AM
  #5
 
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Maybe you are looking at the wrong hotels??? Almost every hotel/lodge we stayed in offered free WiFi for their guests - those few that didn't had it available for a nominal charge - certainly not enough to even put a dent in one's travel budget. Also as I said in my earlier post, we found free WiFi at lots of restaurants & bars and even in some of the shops.

Of course you could always use your the "Data Roaming" feature on your SmartPhone but if you are already balking at paying for inexpensive WiFi at some hotels then you'll be shocked at how much you'll pay using your cell phone.
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Apr 13th, 2014, 08:33 AM
  #6
 
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On our most recent visit to the SI in August/Sept we found that some motels offered free internet, while others charged a nominal fee. We were also in some very remote areas that didn't even have microwave or television let alone internet, but that's the rare exception, not the rule.

Internet is a heck of a lot easier to find and much cheaper than it was even a few years ago. You should have no problems keeping in touch, unless you plan to explore waaay off the beaten path.

Perhaps if you post your itinerary we can steer you in the direction of accommodation that provides free internet access.
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Apr 13th, 2014, 03:06 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
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If your hotel doesn't have wifi then Starbucks usually will if you buy a drink (I've done this in queenstown) my hotel wanted >$20 for 24hr access. Otherwise look into buying a prepaid SIM card with some data loaded.

Have fun on your trip.
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Apr 16th, 2014, 09:08 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
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Indeed you will find plenty of locations with Wi-Fi. Often free of charge, or if they charge, it's like 3-7 NZD for 24 hours.

But once it's free, it often is veeery slow. I just returned from NZ and whether it's McDonald's, Starbucks or a library - if you are in a tourist-wise crowded spot and lots of people try to log in, you end up trying and trying with no result.

So pick out times when few people are around. I experienced it in Akaroa lately. Late in the evening, outside the library (even when it is closed) you have great and fast connections. Once it's daylight and 10 people make use of the Wi-Fi it's unbelievably slow and something like Skype is impossible, just like uploading photos to Facebook.

I had the same experience in Te Anau, in Pahia, Russell.
In Haast I stayed at a backpacker which had Wi-Fi but didn't sell it.
What you need is a card which you load with some money and if you run into a place which has a contract with this company, you can log in with your password and key which is on this card. I bought mine for 7 NZD in Omarama in a hotel and it worked just fine. But sometimes you cannot enter 2 devices with the same code!

Some hotels offer Wi-Fi but only in their main lobby. You end up with 30 people all skyping and yelling at their friends back home at the same time while the connections are very bad (Te Anau/Luxmore Hotel).
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Apr 17th, 2014, 03:05 PM
  #9
 
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Thank you, yes we had seen there was internet at hotels but there were very few that didn't charge. >>

Wifi is strangely cheaper/free in cheaper forms of accommodation - eg in motels and B&Bs. the more expensive the hotel, the more the wifi seems to cost.

do all you can to avoid paying roaming charges - they are ruinous - unless you have an overseas package enabled on your phone.
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May 16th, 2014, 06:31 PM
  #10
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Thank you , plenty of great advice.
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