Starlink Launches New Starlink for RV Option:  30,000+ Orders and Counting

Starlink Launches New Starlink for RV Option: 30,000+ Orders and Counting

Starlink Launches New Starlink for RV Option – 30,000+ Orders and Counting

Good news for RVers! The Starlink for RV option is now available to the public and the demand for the new “Starlink for RVs” option has been high with over 30,000 orders placed since it launched a couple of days ago. The new Starlink for RV is a mobile internet service designed specifically for those traveling in RVs and boats. It offers excellent coverage, even in rural areas where other providers may not reach. In addition, the team at Starlink is constantly working on new ways to improve their services, so you can be sure that your needs will be met.

The Details

Starlink for RVs is available at the same price as Starlink’s regular residential with mobility internet service. The device costs $599 and has a $135 monthly subscription. But unlike before, the new RV plan gives you the ability to pause and un-pause your subscription during the months you are not traveling.

However, note that you can experience de-prioritized service in congested locations during peak hours, which may mean slow service speeds.

That said, on our recent boondocking outing to Wyoming, our signal was around 80Mbps, which was more than enough speed to stream movies, make Wi-Fi calls, and take part in Zoom conferences.

Plans are in place to improve speeds and bandwidth by launching more satellites.

What are the benefits of using Starlink with my RV?

Better Latency

Starlink’s low earth orbit (LEO) satellites are much faster than traditional satellite internet.

  • It takes 550 to 650 milliseconds for these waves of light to travel 90,000 miles, which is about 15% the distance from Earth to the moon.
  • For general web browsing, 550 milliseconds is fast enough.
  • When it comes to games, latency over 100 milliseconds can be a problem.

Starlink internet satellites are not just close, they are now equipped with lasers which allows them to “talk” with one another. This means that lower latency can be achieved with the use of Starlink satellites than with other internet services. Elon Musk said that latency would drop to 20ms later this year-making it an ideal option for gamers looking for low-latency service.

No Data Caps

RV Nomads need data plans with no data caps. This is because they often move around and need to have access to the internet wherever they are.

More Reliable Connection

With Starlink, you can have a more reliable internet connection. That’s because Starlink is delivered by SpaceX, who has thousands of satellites in orbit to ensure good signal strength. In addition, LEO satellites have low latency, meaning that there is little to no delay in transmission speeds. This makes for a smoother online experience when streaming or gaming.

No Service Outages

One of the benefits of using Starlink is that there are no service outages. This means that you can stay connected to the internet no matter where you are in the world. However, please note that this only applies to areas where Starlink has a signal. Also, if you are in an area with tall buildings or trees or other obstructions, your signal may be blocked and you will not be able to connect to the internet.

How Do I Set up My RV for Use with Starlink?

Check if your RV is in a good location for using the Starlink for RV plan

One of the first steps in using Starlink is to check if your RV is located in an area that has good service. You can do this by going to the Starlink website and checking out your “cell” location status.

Starlink for RV

AVAILABILITY STATUS

  1. AVAILABLE = Excellent chance of good signal.
  2. WAITLIST = You internet signal may be de-prioritized.
  3. COMING SOON = No intenet signal.

How to connect your hardware

The Android/IOS phone app walks you through how to set up your RV for use with Starlink.

To connect your Starlink hardware:

  1. Place your satellite dishy in an area that has a clear northern sky free from tall trees or buildings.
  2. Plug the power cord into the your Starlink ‘s router.
  3. Plug in the dishy satellite antenna cord into your Starlink’s router.
  4. If this is your first time on the Starlink internet please allow extra time for the router to install updates (if needed). Otherwise, you should connect with the satellite’s internet signal within 15 minutes or so.

What are some of the best ways to use Starlink while RVing?

Starlink is fast and has low latency

If you’re looking for a satellite internet service that provides high data rates and low latency, look no further than Starlink. The term “latency” refers to the time it takes for a response. With Starlink’s new satellites, this wait time is significantly reduced thanks to the use of lasers to send information between satellites.

How do I troubleshoot any problems I may have with my Starlink service while RVing?

Check your signal strength

When you’re RVing, it’s important to make sure you have a strong signal for your Starlink service. You can do this by checking the signal speed in the Starlink app.

Check for trees or other obstructions

If you’re having trouble with your Starlink service, it’s important to check for trees or other obstructions that might be blocking the signal. You can do this by locating in an open area with a clear view of the sky.

Final Thoughts

Starlink offers a fast and reliable internet connection for RVers and boondocking enthusiasts. They offer an easy setup and fast speeds.

I love the convenience of being able to stay in one place without worrying about having to move because I can’t find a signal or the speed is too slow. We won’t leave home without Starlink.

Bottom Line: Mike and I absolutely love our Starlink system!

RV Full Time Living: Pros and Cons of Full Time Living in a RV

RV Full Time Living: Pros and Cons of Full Time Living in a RV

The idea of living in an RV full time is becoming more and more popular these days. There are a lot of benefits to this lifestyle such as freedom, mobility, and the affordability.

What Is RV Full Time Living?

Depositphotos RV boondocking next to ocean
Depositphotos

RV full time living is a lifestyle choice that many people make for one reason or another. It could be for saving money, retirement, being able to go where they want when they want, or a combination of all three. The choice to live full time in a RV is not an easy one and there are many things that need to be considered before making the leap into this lifestyle. This article will explore some of the reasons people are choosing to live in an RV full time and how they make their full time living lifestyle work.

How to Decide if RV Full Time Living Is for You?

Living in an RV full time can be a great way to see the country and have freedom, but it’s not for everyone. The first step is figuring out if you even want to live full time in an RV.

There are three options: camping on private property, camping on public land, (e.g. boondocking) or living in a campground. Each of these options has its own challenges and benefits, so it’s important to consider them before deciding which option is best for you. For example, if you need to be near electrical hookups and water sources all the time, then living in a campground may not be the best choice. Or if you want to spend every night under the stars, camping on public land, (boondocking) might be more your style.

Once you’ve decided which option is best for you, there are still some key factors to consider before making the leap into full time RV living. How often will you be off the grid? Do you need access to amenities like showers and laundry facilities? How much privacy do you want? These are just a few of the things that will help determine what type of RVing is right for you.

What You Need to Know Before Starting RV Full Time Living

There are some things you need to know before making the leap. One of the most important is that you’ll need to have a good amount saved up, since RVs aren’t cheap. You’ll also need to drastically downsize your belongings, as there isn’t much storage space in an RV.

Starting a virtual business is a great way to achieve freedom. You can set your own hours and work from anywhere you want as long as you have an internet connection. The key is to do as much work as possible while spending only enough time on it that makes sense for the family. This will allow you to have more control over your life and spend more time with your loved ones.

Also, think about your lifestyle and whether it’s something that can adjust to living in close quarters with family or friends. If everyone involved is on board and ready for the change, then RV full time living can be a fun and rewarding experience.

Pros of RV Full Time Living

Your Home is Where You Park it
Your Home is Where You Park it
  • There are many pros to living full time in an RV. For starters, it can be a great way to reduce stress and live a more simple life. You’ll also find that traveling full time is a great way to maximize your time. Plus, living on the road is an excellent way to explore different cultures and experience new things firsthand.
  • One of the biggest advantages to living full time in an RV is that you don’t have to worry about maintaining a home or paying rent/mortgage. Most RVs are much cheaper than a house and a RV has all the amenities that most people need. They have a bathroom, kitchen, beds and storage areas. It is much cheaper to live in an RV than it is to rent or own a home. This can be a huge money saver for those who are living on a fixed income.
  • You’ll also have the freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want. If you need to move somewhere quickly, or if you want to take an impromptu trip, you can do that with ease. And if you decide later on that you don’t like where you are, simply pack up and hit the road again. If you are boondocking, you don’t have to worry about making reservations or planning in advance. You can just go!
  • There are many places that are great for full time RV living. The best places are those that have warm weather and low cost of living. Florida, Texas, California, New Mexico, Nevada and Arizona are all great choices for full time RV living.
  • You are more in touch with nature – Many people have been so busy working and living their lives that they forget about the natural beauty of the world around them. RV full time living allows you to see this beauty on a daily basis.
  • You can make new friends. RV full time living gives you the opportunity to meet people that are like minded and share your interests. This is an excellent way to make new friends.
  • You are more self reliant RV full time living allows you to be less dependent on the system and other people.

Cons of RV Full Time Living

It’s not all sunshine and roses when it comes to living full time in an RV.

  • On the con side, you have to get rid of most of your personal property. You can’t just take everything with you on the road, so you have to figure out what to do with it. You can keep it in storage, sell it, give it away or throw it away.
  • If you are traveling with others, you’ll lose some of your privacy—especially if you’re living in a small van or small RV.
  • You’ll also be away from family and friends. If you’re close to your family and friends, this can be an enormous drawback.
  • You’ll have to deal with the weather, which can be difficult if you live in an area that gets extreme winter weather or hot summers.
  • There is a sense of freedom that comes with RV living, but also a lack of stability and permanence.
  • Pets can be a big hassle. They require a lot of equipment, food, and toys.
  • You give up some of the comforts of home, like a consistent shower and stable internet connection.
  • It may be difficult to find places that allow overnight parking. In some areas, it is illegal to park overnight in certain places. If you are going to be traveling a lot, this could make life difficult for you.
  • Finding friends and community along our travels- something that’s not always easy when moving around constantly. But through online resources and by being proactive in your search, you’ll be able to find a great group of people that we now consider family.
  • You need to have a mailing address and driver’s license in one state, and you must pay taxes on your RV even if it’s your primary residence.

What Do Full Time RVers Use for An Address?

When living full time in an RV, you’ll need to have a permanent address. A mailing address is typically required for insurance, taxes, licensing, and other purposes. Many people choose to use a mail forwarding service. This is a service that will scan your mail for you and send it to a new address of your choice, without taking months to approve or rejecting you later on. This is the best way to maintain a domicile while living in an RV full time.

Check out this video for more details on what is involved in choosing a domicile:

How to Make the Most of Your RV Full Time Journey

Living in an RV full time can be a great experience. Here are a few tips:

  1. Make a budget and stick to it. This is especially important if you’re trying to save money while on the road.
  2. Find ways to make money while traveling. There are many opportunities for those who are willing to work hard – teaching English online, freelance writing and editing, offer website design, etc.
  3. Stay connected with friends and family back home. Technology makes this easier than ever before using Skype, Facebook, WhatsApp, etc.
  4. Explore your surroundings. Hit the beaches, go hiking or camping, visit museums and other tourist attractions—the possibilities are endless.

How Do I Save up To Pay Cash for An RV?

There are many ways to save up for a large purchase, like an RV. Here are some tips:

  1. Plan ahead and save up in advance of the time when you’ll need to buy your RV. This will help you avoid taking on a lot of debt.
  2. Make sure you have enough money for the RV and all of its maintenance costs, including gas, insurance, registration fees and repairs.
  3. Choose a smaller RV if you are on a budget. Smaller RVs cost less to buy and maintain, as well as being cheaper to insure.
  4. Look for used RVs if you can’t afford a new one. You can find used RVs at RV dealers, as well as through online classified ads or websites like Craigslist and eBay.
  5. Get the RV inspected by a professional before buying it, so that you know exactly what you are getting for your money.
  6. Buy an RV that is ready to use as soon as you buy it. This means buying a towable, van, or motorhome with everything included, like a bed, bathroom and kitchen equipment.
  7. Get the RV insured before you use it and make sure that the insurance covers any damage or theft.
  8. Get a copy of the RV’s manual, so that you know how everything works before you start using it.

Why Do People Quit Full Time RVing?

There are many reasons people quit RVing. One of the most common is that they don’t have a lot of money to start with, so it’s often difficult for them to afford a RV, gasoline and all of the other expenses that go along with full time RVing.

A lot of people who want to try RVing think they need to buy a big, expensive Class A motorhome. That’s not necessarily true. The cost of a large motorhome can be prohibitive, particularly for someone just starting out in RVing.

Rent an RV before you buy one. This will give you the opportunity to try out different types of RVs and see which ones are most comfortable for you. You’ll also get a sense of what kind of RV lifestyle is right for you.

Final Thoughts

There are a lot of benefits to full time RV living. Some people enjoy the freedom and flexibility it offers, while others find it less stressful than traditional home life. However, there are also some disadvantages, such as reduced social interaction. If you are considering this type of lifestyle, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons carefully before making any decisions.

Happy Trails,

SIG DoraKSaparow 1
Starlink for RV: Internet in Your RV While Boondocking in Remote Locations

Starlink for RV: Internet in Your RV While Boondocking in Remote Locations

Whether you need to check in with work, post photos of your latest adventure or just catch up on some emails, a good internet connection is key. And if you’re an RV enthusiast, then you know that having reliable internet access in a remote area can be a real game-changer.

Starlink for RV: What is Starlink?

Starlink is a satellite-based internet service that will provide low-latency, high bandwidth internet access to boondockers. This will be made possible through the deployment of thousands of Starlink satellites.

It’s always exciting when a new technology comes out that can potentially change the way we live our lives. That’s exactly what Starlink is doing for digital nomads everywhere—offering us a chance to have fast, reliable internet anywhere they go without worrying about data caps or cell reception no matter how remote we’re boondocking.

For those who have bought their dream RV and are boondocking with no central cell provider nearby, you might be stuck without options when it comes to internet accessibility. If you are a digital nomad, Starlink is the solution you are looking for.

Why Is Mobile Internet so Important for RVers?

RVers need mobile internet for a variety of reasons. For many, it’s essential for working remotely. If you’re not a digital nomad, and don’t rely on the internet for income, then an unreliable connection might be okay. But for the majority of RVers who work on the road, having a solid mobile internet connection is key to running a successful business.

For example, back in the day, an extended road trip to the Arctic Ocean with no internet connection would have been unthinkable. But now, with Starlink internet you can connect your RV to the internet while boondocking in remote areas. This will let you stay connected to the world and also keep your loved ones updated on your adventures.

Starlink Is Very Scalable, so Bandwidth Should Not Be an Issue as They Grow

Starlink Kit 2nd Generation
Starlink Kit (2nd Generation)

One of the benefits of using a satellite system like Starlink is that it is very scalable. SpaceX has already deployed 1,469 Starlink satellites into orbit and is targeting a grand total of 30,000. This means that as the company grows, they will not have to worry about running out of bandwidth. Because their satellites are in low earth orbit, they will provide high-bandwidth service to any location on Earth. In addition, they do not have data caps, so you can use as much bandwidth as you need without having to worry about going over your limit.

What are the benefits of using Starlink?

The Pros Using Starlink for RV Are:

  • Starlink is a great option for people who like to travel and want to be able to watch their favorite TV shows and movies while on the road.
  • Starlink offers broadband download speeds of 200+ Mbps, which is more than enough bandwidth to support a full-time RV lifestyle.
  • For digital nomads who work online, Starlink gives them the option to boondock without worrying if they will have a reliable internet connection.
  • You can make and receive VOIP calls using the Wi-FI call option in your cell phone’s settings.
  • The biggest pro for digital nomads is that you don’t need any cell towers or hard lines-you can just hook up your Starlink to the satellite. This makes it a great option for those who like to travel off-grid (i.e., boondocking).

The Cons of Using Starlink for RV Are:

  • You must have a clear view to the Northern sky as trees, canyon walls, etc. can keep Starlink from getting a signal. For RVers, this means finding a campsite that has minimal or no trees around them.
  • Hardware requires installation.
  • Software app set-up is required.
  • Requires AC electricity. (It has been reported that a 12 volt DC option is coming).
  • Monthly payments of $110.00 is better suited to the full-time RVer as opposed to the to the RVer who camp 3 or 4 times a year.

Benefits for Full-Time RVers and Boondockers

There are many ways to get internet service in your RV, but not all of them are equal. Some RVers rely on their cell phone plans for internet service, but this can be unreliable, especially in rural or remote areas where there is little or no cell coverage. 5G, 4G, and 3G speeds can often be challenging to receive in these places. (See: Staying Connected to the Internet on the Road in a RV—The RV Digital Nomad Guide for more info).

Starlink’s fast speeds could make long journeys a breeze for full-time RVers and boondockers. However, because of the $109 monthly subscription fee, Starlink Internet will probably benefit full-time RVers and digital nomads more than “weekenders” who camp only a few times every year.

Roaming Is Now Available

The Starlink group on Facebook and Reddit are filled with happy comments on being able to get Starlink internet service at multiple locations.

In early February 2022, a firmware update added a line indicating “Roaming=true” to the Starlink app debug information. This was celebrated by RV boondockers, as roaming with Starlink is now available in remote areas without having to switch their “home base” service address each time they move to a new location. Hundreds of Starlink users have since confirmed that they are able to roam and access the internet through their RV’s Starlink dishy.

Since Starlink is now available in roaming mode, RVers can connect to the internet while boondocking in remote areas. However, it is important to note that as of this publication date that your signal may be degraded as Starlink states it is a “best effort” while roaming outside your service address.

Roaming has been a big deal for a long time because it used to be so much harder to get connected while on the go, since you could only change your service address if you were lucky enough to be one of the select people chosen by Starlink. However, as of April 7th, 2019, everyone now appears to have access to this service. In fact, if you order Starlink now, it has been reported by many new users that Starlink is now being shipped with roaming turned on.

Order Your Starlink Hardware Now, Get in 10 days or less!

One unique aspect to the nomadic lifestyle is that most full-time RVers generally don’t have a fixed address that they specifically need permanent Starlink service at—so technically anywhere in the US can be used as a service address. So, if your plan is to travel with Starlink, then it really doesn’t matter where your service address is when you order it—especially now that Starlink service seems to successfully roam when away from the set service address. You just need to find an empty cell that will accept orders and then enter your shipping address so your order will be shipped right to you. Detailed instructions are available here.

The Starlink Kit Shipped to You Contains:

  • The Satellite Antenna (dish).
  • A tripod-stand for satellite antenna.
  • A router, power supply and connecting wires.

Dishy is delivered pre-assembled to your doorstep and all you have to do is plug it in. The setup process is quick, straightforward and worry-free. The Starlink app can be used to set up the router’s internet name and password, then you can log-in and start browsing on the Internet.

Installing Your Starlink Hardware

The process of setting up Starlink is as simple as it gets. It only takes about 20 minutes to set up the hardware and then you can immediately start surfing the web from anywhere in your RV.

  1. Find a place to set your Starlink dish on top of your RV or on a picnic table or even on the ground.
  2. Make sure you have a clear view of the Northern sky.
  3. Run the cord from the Starlink antenna into your RV. An easy method to do this is to run the cord through the rubber gaskets in your slide out.
  4. Connect the antenna cord to the Starlink router.
  5. Connect the power cord to the router.

Refund Information

You have a 30-day window in which you can return the Starlink equipment if you decide it’s not for you. After that, there is a one-year refund policy in place. If your Starlink kit is stolen, destroyed or otherwise removed from your premises without your authorization, you must provide notice via the Starlink Customer Portal immediately. The service has several restrictions, including no refunds after 30 days and a one-year warranty.

Final Thoughts

Starlink is the first ever satellite network that provides broadband internet service to RV campers and trailers. It’s a game-changing, life-changing service for those who want to cut the bonds to home or office and explore remote areas. With Starlink, there is no need for cell towers or Wi-Fi hotspots; you simply need an unobstructed view of the Northern sky.

Happy Trails,

SIG DoraKSaparow 1
Working from Anywhere: My Life as a Digital Nomad

Working from Anywhere: My Life as a Digital Nomad

My husband and I bought a RV trailer and a truck eight years ago and I put my thriving web design firm, Dora Kay Design, on the road.

Like most folks who work online, I work full-time. When your profession involves building websites on the internet, geographic freedom is one of the perks.

I’m passionate (even obsessed!) about web design, and I can do it from anywhere … so I do.

Boondocking in Apple Valley3 1 scaled
Boondocking in Apple Valley – My office” (D.Saparow)

Our home is in Denver, Colorado, but my husband and I travel all over North America for about nine months every year. During that time, my “home office” has a constantly changing view. Blue skies, mountains, rolling hills—the beauty of nature surrounds me and inspires me to do my best work as a creative. I make stunning, powerful websites while looking out at vistas which would take your breath away.

AL Salmon Glacier 1 scaled
Salmon Glacier 9D. (D. Saparow)

I couldn’t work from anywhere without some essential tools—because even though I’m sometimes far from civilization, my clients deserve quick responses to their questions and concerns. I never want web connectivity issues to interfere with deadlines or deliverables.

Eight years into being a digital nomad I’ve perfected my tech set-up.

I have:

  1. A laptop loaded up with all my design software,
  2.  A 4G LTE smartphone with a truly unlimited data plan, which powers up a WiFi hotspot on demand, and 
  3. A dedicated hot spot device. (Optional but recommended.)
  4. 4G LTE booster. With it, I can get a reliable internet connection even where most smartphones wouldn’t.
  5. A VPN (Virtual Private Network). While traveling, if I don’t have a signal at our campsite, I work on websites on a wide range of Wi-Fi networks in coffee shops, libraries, restaurants, etc. With a VPN, my data is protected.

(A laptop, smartphone, and booster are all I need … but I’m eagerly awaiting the rollout of satellite-enabled Starlink for RVs. Simple, always-on high-speed internet in the remotest of remote areas? Yes, please!)

Denali National Park and Preserve2 scaled
Denali National Park and Preserve2 scaled

I take customer service seriously. Me staying connected to the internet means you’ll be able to contact me or someone on my web team anytime. Simply go here and we’ll get back to you promptly. I don’t work from an office, but I’m just as available to my clients as I would be if I did.

Littlefield AZ PANO scaled
Washington, Utah – Another view from my “home office”.

Some people complain that their life is all work and no play. And I’ll be honest—some people see my photos and think my life is all play and no work.

But the truth is, what we’ve found on the road is balance.

Balance. An elusive thing, but worth striving for.

Happy Trails,

Staying Connected to the Internet on the Road in a RV—The RV Digital Nomad Guide

Staying Connected to the Internet on the Road in a RV—The RV Digital Nomad Guide

You are RV living on the road and exploring the North American highways in your RV. You have an online business to run and it is essential that you have an internet connection. You are boondocking in a remote area and your 4G LTE signal is weak, or doesn’t exist at all.

When you’re on the road, you may run into times where it’s difficult to stay connected to the internet-especially if you like to boondock in remote areas. The variety of solutions I use to stay connected to the internet will be the topic of this blog post.

What Options are Available to Stay Connected on the Road?

The first step is looking at your connectivity options.that are available to you. If you want to work remotely, you’ll need a reliable internet connection. It’s best to choose a service provider that offers unlimited data and has a good network coverage. IMO, Verizon and AT&T seem to have the best 4G LTE coverage. I have Verizon and have been happy with the connection coverage provided by them.

Common 4G LTE and Wi-Fi Connection Solutions for a RV

Cellular Data

Cellular Data is a type of network which allows mobile devices to connect to the Internet. Cellular data has been around for over 20 years and it is now the most used form of data communication.

If you ‘re a weekend camper who likes to stay in full service RV parks or a campground or RV park that you know has a strong signal, a cell phone and/or tablet is all you need to connect to the Internet.

Public Wi-Fi

Public Wi-Fi is a convenient way to connect with people and the world around you. They can be found in many places that require wireless internet access, such as coffee shops, restaurants, libraries, and airports. What is even more amazing about the Public Wi-Fi is that they are free to use. This means you can connect with your friends, family, and business associates without having to worry about the cost of data charges.

Tethering and Portable Hotspot

Most of today’s cell phones and tablets have a hotspot option available. Using your phone or tablet as a hotspot is a great way to connect your portable devices, such as your laptop, smartphone or tablet, with the Internet. Basically, this means you can use your smartphone as a hotspot to share data between other devices within range.

A disadvantage is that data usage is battery intensive, making it impractical if you plan on using the hotspot all day.

Another solution would be to purchase a dedicated cellular hotspot. A cellular hotspot is a small stand-alone device that connects to the cellular data connection and allows your laptop, cell phone or tablet to connect to the Internet via Wi-Fi. If it has an antenna option (most do,) pick up a Mi-Mo antenna that attaches to your RV window via a suction cup. It could mean the difference between finding a 4G LTE signal or not.

4G LTE Signal Booster

Digital nomads RVers should consider adding a 4G LTE booster to their RV for better connectivity. A booster can help you stay connected on the road when boondocking in remote areas.

With more and more people choosing to live the RV lifestyle, many RVers are discovering what it’s like to live off the grid. One of the challenges faced by digital nomads is maintaining a strong internet connection. A 4G LTE booster can help you stay connected on the road when boondocking in remote areas.

Wi-Fi Signal Booster

A Wi-Fi signal booster can mean the difference between getting a Wi-Fi signal or not in a full-service RV park that has spotty service. I’ve also used this booster when we’re dry camping overnight in a Walmart or a Cracker Barrel restaurant.

Satellite Internet

Satellite Internet is another way to stay connected when you are in a place with limited cellular service. This technology allows you to connect to the Internet using a satellite dish or antennae. In most cases, you will need to purchase this type of Internet service in order to use it – and it can be quite expensive. While not nearly as fast as cellular data, it’s a great alternative if you want to stay connected in places with limited cellular service.

(But wait, look what’s the best new thing that is coming soon to RVers…)

SpaceX Starlink Satellite Internet service is coming for RVs!

(Starlink is here NOW! Read about it here.)

SpaceX is working on a specific antenna that will wire vehicles like semi trailers and RVs to its internet network. Elon Musk said in a tweet, “This is for aircraft, ships, large trucks & RVs.” Source: Elon Musk wants to connect RVs and trucks to the internet through SpaceX’s Starlink satellites (msn.com)

It’s easier to maintain than actually connecting a traditional cellular connection and much faster than your average home Internet. I know that when the Starlink Satellite Internet Services is available for RV’s I’ll be one of the first customers in line!

Channel Islands National Park

Finding a Connection in an RV Park

There are many benefits to staying at an RV park, one of the main being the amenity package. Amenities vary depending on the campground, but there will be nearby shops for groceries and gas, laundry facilities, parks and activities for the kids to enjoy, and other amenities including Wi-Fi.

That said, one downside of RVing in some campgrounds is the lackluster Wi-Fi service many park and campgrounds are known for. I’ve tried some campgrounds that offered me a connection only to find an unserviceable internet connection upon arrival.

Wi-Fi boosting devices can help with a poor campground Wi-Fi signal so they’re worth considering to avoid technological frustration. They won’t always provide the boost of service needed, but they will at least improve your current signal if you’re in a really remote area.

Finding a Connection at Your Campsite

It can be hard to keep in contact with people while exploring some of the United States’ most beautiful and remote places, especially since cell phone coverage varies from one area to another – even when you have the best carriers.

When looking for a campsite, be sure to use the websites and apps listed below to check for signal reports from RVers, and always have a backup plan. Even if you’re using a cell signal booster, you have to be observant of your campsite’s existing signal.

For example, we were en route to our new campsite in Kings Canyon National Park when I learned that there was a hotel that had a signal and it was the only place that had a signal for miles around. When I got there, I checked the Wi-Fi on my Android cell phone and it indeed had a strong Wi-Fi signal. I checked with the front desk if it was all right to do some online work there and they said I could stay there as long as I want. And so I did!

Add a 4G cellular signal booster to your RV for better connectivity

If you are traveling and need to stay connected, consider using a 4G LTE booster. There have been times where my booster turned an unusable signal into a signal that was fast enough I could do my work.

Boosters work only for existing signals and can’t boost weak or dead ones. Use your “The Cell app” for a 4G signal – any 4G LTE signal, even if it is ½ of a bar or less. If there’s a whisper of a signal, I have a chance of making it useable simply by turning on my 4G LTE booster. Doing so will usually add one or more bars to the 4G signal – which can make the difference in getting my work done.

Full Service RV Park

Another option is to find a full-service RV park which has a strong Wi-Fi signal. Unfortunately, RV Parks in general have a bad reputation for Wi-Fi and the signal can be weak or non-existent. As a general rule, the closer you are to the park office, the better the Wi-Fi signal.

Find a Connection in a Nearby City

I love to camp in remote locations. For example, when we were in Alaska, we found a place to boondock that surrounded us with mountains on both sides and it had a river running through it! It was like we were living in a postcard. We were completely cut off from civilization and I was in boondocking heaven!

Unfortunately, we were so remote that our communication with the outside world was also completely cut off. Since I had a Zoom meeting with my boss later that afternoon, I had to figure out a way to get online.

I checked my cell app again for a signal. Nope. Not even a whisper of signal. Our 4G signal booster is good, but it can’t make something from nothing.

What to do? One option I have is I can drive to the nearest town and seek out free Wi-Fi in coffeehouses, restaurants, libraries, and visitors centers. Sometimes I don’t even have to leave my vehicle, as the signal is strong enough to reach the parking lot.

Also, many Wi-Fi businesses leave their Wi-Fi on after hours.

*Note that many public hotspots require that you know the hotspot’s password. Hotspots are also sometimes available in parks and visitor centers, but again, they may be password-protected. The hotspot service provider often provides the password upon request.

Denali National Park and Preserve

Argh! There are no nearby cities…

We’re boondocked along the Dempster Highway in the Engineer Creek Campground, 130 miles from the Arctic Circle. As expected, my 4G LTE booster reads nada. The nearest city is 235.0 km away—time to kick back, relax and have a brewski!

LOL Not really. Fortunately, I had researched this destination, and I knew there would be no options to get online (big surprise!) so I let my web-team know I will be offline for “X” number of days and they will respond to anybody who contacts Dora Kay Design.

This doesn’t mean I’m sitting around doing nothing. I simply take my design work offline. I have all my design software on my laptop and I use a WordPress emulator called Local to work on a copy of the WordPress website projects I’m working on. Google Docs also has an offline option, which is nice.

Fortunately, we are rarely out of options unless we are in a remote area like the North West Canadian Territories or remote areas in Alaska.

Do Your Research Online to Find a Signal Before You Arrive at Your Destination!

Research, Research, Research!

Boondocking while traveling in an RV typically requires more planning ahead of time. Most campgrounds and RV parks have Wi-Fi, but cell service may be spotty or non-existent when you’re out in the middle of nowhere. Learn about your next destination before you leave for your next boondocking site.

Here’s what I do:

  1. The first thing I do when researching our next boondocking destination is to go to the Compendium website. We’ve found some real nice boondocking places to stay at on this site and it’s an excellent starting point to find nearby boondocking sites. I check out all the photos, read the info and all the reviews to find out the details about the campground, so we will have a good idea of what to expect when we get there. Compendium even shows if there are any 4G LTE signals available and how strong the signal is. Nice!
  2. Once I decide on a boondocking site, I go to Google Maps and zoom in on the area in satellite mode to check out the roads and surrounding terrain. And since we have solar onboard, are there any sites not covered with trees?
  3. Next I call the forest ranger office nearest to the site and find out if there are any “gotchas” we need to know about before we get there. Is the area closed? Are there any nearby forest fires? Are there any other boondocking areas available for RVs?

When looking for a campsite, be sure to also use the websites and apps listed below to check for signal reports from RVers, and always have a backup plan!

Apps & Website Tools I Use to Find Places to Boondock

Compendium website (IOS / PC)

Forest Service

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Network Cell Info Lite – Mobile & WiFi Signal – Apps on Google Play

freecampsites.net (Android/IOS/ PC)

This app is excellent for finding boondocking sites to stay at. For the most part it is accurate but sometimes we got to our destination it wasn’t what we were expecting so I use freecampsites.net to get a view of the area I am interested in boondocking and then use the website Compendium to verify my findings.

Happy Trails,