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Old November 4th, 2010, 08:08 PM
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Default Do you take your laptop?

I just bought a netbook and was wondering how many Cruisemates take their PC with them?

I have one of the older (2007) laptops - kinda heavy and slow, but I wanted something small and light that would fit in my purse to take when I'm traveling, so I bought a wireless netbook. The main purpose is looking things up online, email and picture storage. I'm sure it does a lot more.

What do you use your PC for when traveling? Does it work in Europe? Are the ships wireless or do you have to pay some fee for using something like this?

I travel every other month usually - and now I'll finally be connected!!!
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Old November 4th, 2010, 09:53 PM
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I've been bringing my netbook on the last few cruises. I use it mainly to download the hundreds of digital pictures from our cameras. I then always make them into a slideshow set to music. When we debark the ship I'm ready to sent CDs to friends and relatives--whether they want them or not!
The ships are set up for wifi, but some areas get much better reception than others. However, even the best areas are extremely slow (more like a dial up connection) due to the satellite feed. At 75 cents a minute I found it much better to wait till getting off the ship. Almost every port had a free wifi coffee shop. For the price of a small coffee I spent an hour or so online in a cafe---or McDonalds.
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Old November 4th, 2010, 09:56 PM
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When I owned a laptop I never took it on vacation .
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Old November 5th, 2010, 07:50 AM
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We have taken a netbook to download pictures. Other than that I like to be disconnected - vacation is vacation.
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Old November 5th, 2010, 09:22 AM
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Exactly ,when we are on vacation we want to relax and not dwell on the real world
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Old November 5th, 2010, 10:19 AM
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I never leave home without my laptop, and yes I use it constantly.

I generally buy the biggest package they offer the first day so I do not get anxious about the cost - which is considerable. It averages 25 to 50 cents /minute.

However - you can find artices on how to NOT use uip to much time, and get the most out of the time you use. Log in (yes, all connections on ships are usually wireless) and download all of your email. Then log off. Answer all your emall and hit "send" and it will be stored in your :outbox" until the next time you log in.

Get used to logging in and out frequently - never type and email while the clock is running. You will get the hang of it.
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Old November 5th, 2010, 01:05 PM
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Thanks for the tips. I'm not that much of a techy - quite the opposite. If I can ask one question - will my netbook not work until I purchase the internet plan on the ship? Do they give me some sort of code that will give me the connection?

I take several land trips a year and I'm excited I'll be able to get hotel info or find a restaurant, and of course my emails while on the road.

Thanks.
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Old November 5th, 2010, 01:33 PM
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You netbook will work fine aboard.

Connecting to the internet is much like doing so at a hotel. The first time you try to connect to any site you will be redirected to a page to connect through the ships system.

You don't want to try to connect through a phone type connection. First, I don't believe their are any 3G ships, and second it would be much more expensive than the ships charges. You can select a package or pay by the minute plan, and you create your ID at that time. It's usually something like name and cabin #.

If you use a separate mail program such as Outlook you will need to establish a connection through your browser first.

As Paul indicated be sure to terminate your connection by typing 1.1.1.1 in the address bar. Otherwise the clock keeps on ticking.

Another choice if you want to be connected to to check out internet cafes or wireless hot spots ashore. Be especially careful of hackers in these situations.
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Old November 5th, 2010, 04:09 PM
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There is a site on line that lists every internet cafe in every country in the world .
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Old November 6th, 2010, 01:37 AM
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I much prefer bring my iPhone. I can do things that I could also do in my laptop. It is much lighter and smaller than any laptop.
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Old November 6th, 2010, 02:39 AM
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I bring my laptop, mostly in case I fill my memory cards, but also as a charging station. I can charge my cell phone and my MP3 player via USB, so I only need to use one outlet in the cabin for charging everything. But I never use the WiFi or take it off the ship in port. If I'm in a port that has service, I will use my Sprint Blackberry mostly just to call my mother.
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Old November 6th, 2010, 12:04 PM
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That's a great idea Hawkeye - charging station. I wouldn't have thought of that. I also didn't know hackers could be a problem.
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Old November 6th, 2010, 11:20 PM
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After a death in the immediate family while we were on a cruise, and not being notified by the pursors desk for 12 hours and at 1:30 in the morning becuase they lost the message, I always carry my mini-netbook or at least log onto the ship's computer and set up an account the first day when the packages are a bit cheaper. I check email twice a day, alphabetize the sender, pick the ones I want to read and copy and paste to my computer. I then log off, type my responses on my puter, then log back on and copy and paste the response. I am usually on-line no more that 2 or 3 minutes each time.

We were onboard during Hurricane Katrina and had sailed out of NOLA. The lines to the ship's computers looked the lines for Black Friday shopping, My netbook would have been great then.

I love using my mini-netbook anywhere on the ship, even sitting out next to the pool. I also love being able to download my pics since my camera was stolen on a cruise and I lost all my cruise pics along with it. I have made travel journals for trips for 40 years and love doing that on my netbook as we travel as well.
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Old November 7th, 2010, 08:22 AM
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I have my first long cruise coming up a year from this month - I'll be gone over 2 weeks. I have 2 boys in college who will be home around that time on break, so I want to be able to get email updates (in between the parties they will most likely have), just to make sure my house is still standing.

I'm going to try the cut and paste email trick before I go - don't want to waste pricey minutes trying to figure it out.

Thanks for all the good idea's.
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Old November 9th, 2010, 09:16 AM
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Never, I go on vacation to get away from all that. No laptops, internet, cell phones etc. Peace, Quiet and fun are what we go for.

I used to take that stuff to keep in touch, but found I was still working etc, defeated the purpose of going on vacation so I stopped.
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Old November 12th, 2010, 12:14 AM
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I brought mine for the first time recently (Legend out of Tampa) and I loved having it along.

A. Nice to have back-up for photos in case camera is lost/stolen/damaged.

B. Family back home is always interested in our status and a quick email back/forth gives us all peace.

C. Laptop in stateroom is MUCH nicer than waiting for the computer to open up in the library.

HOWEVER, I cannot figure out why cruise lines charge such an ungodly rate for WIFI access. $60 for a 100 minute plan is outrageous, and .75 cents per minute for a "pay per minute" plan is stupid. It's not like Carnival is paying for the satellite. In my opinion this is one of the biggest rip-offs cruise lines come up with......especially in this day and age when internet access is expected and common place.
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Old November 12th, 2010, 04:18 AM
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Since I have to fly to ports, I take my phone with internet (less weight) and leave the laptop at home.

I usually buy a few hours of internet from the ship to check and send emails. For me, it's the cheapest way to let family know I'm OK since I travel solo a lot.

The SD cards for my camera are small enough to carry and everything fits into the safe in the cabin.
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Old November 12th, 2010, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by CO_Cruiser View Post
I brought mine for the first time recently (Legend out of Tampa) and I loved having it along.

HOWEVER, I cannot figure out why cruise lines charge such an ungodly rate for WIFI access. $60 for a 100 minute plan is outrageous, and .75 cents per minute for a "pay per minute" plan is stupid. It's not like Carnival is paying for the satellite. In my opinion this is one of the biggest rip-offs cruise lines come up with......especially in this day and age when internet access is expected and common place.
Carnival does pay for the satellite and they pay the provider quite a bit for it. MTN is the company that handles satellite communications for almost every ship and only about 256Kb - 512Kb, of the total bandwidth, are allocated for passenger Internet.

Satellite time isn't cheap and, like any on board service, Carnival wants to make a profit on it.

Take care,
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Old November 16th, 2010, 11:46 PM
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We always bring our laptop, cell phone and other devices. For the most part I use it for uploading pictures, movies etc. I agree that the price is a bit steep, but supply and demand will do that. We are just grateful to have the option while in the middle of the ocean. We always buy a package once we get onboard so that we dont have to worry about the minutes. I just bought a new laptop, a Dell 17R, even with the large screen it is still extremely easy to travel with.

On a side note, on our most recent trip to Mexico (Ai, not cruise) our resort didnt carry most of the sporting events. So I was very popular by the pool with NFL Sunday Ticket To-Go on my laptop. Got to love technology!!
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Old November 23rd, 2010, 02:16 PM
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Default Use an Ipod Touch instead

Just before our last cruise I pondered whether to take our laptop again as we had done on other cruises. Instead, I purchased an Ipod "Touch" which is basically an Iphone without having to pay for the phone service.

With this device, you can access the internet AND make phone calls (VOIP) anywhere there is WiFi access. You can use it on the ship if you want to save money, wait until you are in port and find a WiFi hot spot.

We did this in every port that we visited for 2 weeks in Oct. We were able to keep up with our e-mails (mostly deleted or quickly browsed for content) and we made phone calls too.

Making phone calls requires you to download an App from one of the VOIP services like Skype. I got their app and then purchased a plan for $4.95 that gave me a month of unlimited phone calls any where in North America. We were in the Eastern and Western Carribean for two weeks and it worked everywhere. WE called home every few days and could talk for hours if we wanted to.

Other than saving a boat-load of money, the best thing about the Ipod was that it was small and light enough to carry in my pants pocket. I really had gotten sick of lugging the laptop around. We actually were checking our e-mail while lounging on the beach in Honduras at a day spa that had WiFi.

Additionally, you can get app's that allow you to check the weather anywhere in the world, including back home so that you can see what you are missing (or not). I put a app in for the Buffalo News so that I could read local stories when I had the time.

I never used the internet on the boat with the Ipod so I do not know how well it would work there. Normally, the internet service via satellite is so slow on other ships that it was much too expensive in the long run to use, especially at 75 cents per minute.

I purchased my Ipod touch new on Ebay for $170. Since then there is a new version (4th generation) and the price has gone up. You can get used ones (3rd generation) for much less and they work just as well.

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Old November 23rd, 2010, 02:20 PM
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Forgot one more thing, on the new version of the Ipod touch, you also get an HD video camera. This can be very nice when you are on a trip and don't want a large camera to carry.
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Old December 8th, 2010, 07:50 PM
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Default Help need as to how to download email when on ship

Howdy!
I usually get hit for $3.00 to $5.00 for each email I read and respond to! I have tried, but can't figure out how to "download" email so I can quickly log off the ship's internet and read the emails off line. I use GMail. I have tried all buttons and just can't figure it out.
We would be VERY grateful to learn how to download Gmail messages and then answer emails OFF LINE, and then how to send once logged on the ship's internet again. We use our netbook as it is much faster than any ship's email...including the new ships such as Eclipse, Oasis, etc.

MANY MANY THANKS!!
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Old December 8th, 2010, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kathyscottcrusin View Post
Howdy!
I usually get hit for $3.00 to $5.00 for each email I read and respond to! I have tried, but can't figure out how to "download" email so I can quickly log off the ship's internet and read the emails off line. I use GMail. I have tried all buttons and just can't figure it out.
We would be VERY grateful to learn how to download Gmail messages and then answer emails OFF LINE, and then how to send once logged on the ship's internet again. We use our netbook as it is much faster than any ship's email...including the new ships such as Eclipse, Oasis, etc.

MANY MANY THANKS!!
Sign on to the Internet, open your Gmail account. All your mail downloads to it. Log off the internet, and open your Gmail account, and all your old emails should be there for you to browse at your leisure.

To write responses, write them off line, and press send. Since you aren't on the internet they'll be saved in your outbox. When you log back on to the internet they will automatically be sent when you open gmail again.
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Old December 8th, 2010, 09:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kathyscottcrusin View Post
Howdy!
I usually get hit for $3.00 to $5.00 for each email I read and respond to! I have tried, but can't figure out how to "download" email so I can quickly log off the ship's Internet and read the emails off line. I use Gmail. I have tried all buttons and just can't figure it out.
We would be VERY grateful to learn how to download Gmail messages and then answer emails OFF LINE, and then how to send once logged on the ship's Internet again. We use our netbook as it is much faster than any ship's email...including the new ships such as Eclipse, Oasis, etc.

MANY MANY THANKS!!
The best way to do it is to use Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Live or Windows Mail. That is if you have Windows.

Once you are connected you just hit Send/Receive and download your email. Once it's downloaded then logoff, pull up the mail from your inbox, delete or respond to it while offline. Then just log on hit Send/Receive, logoff and you're done. The only time this can be a problem is if "Aunt Bessie" decides to send 20, 5MB photos of Fluffy in her Christmas outfits.

If you are using the Online Webmail for Gmail I suggest that you change over to a downloaded mail program like the ones I mentioned above.

Take care,
Mike
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Old December 8th, 2010, 10:30 PM
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Thanks to you both! I didn't realize it stayed in the computer once logged off (actually it kinda of was there after my test log on/off. I tried a dry run of doing that here at home, and it does not work well. It freezes when I try to type a reply offline and cancels the message before allowing me to go back to the offline in box. I am using internet Gmail. So, I guess you suggest setting up a live email account? I will try that and if it works it will be great...but hard to get folks to learn a new email address foer me since ive had the same one for years. Gmail (google) seems to be having more problems these days. If I am missing a step with gmail, please let me know. MANY MANY THANKS!!!
kathy
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Old December 8th, 2010, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kathyscottcrusin View Post
Thanks to you both! I didn't realize it stayed in the computer once logged off (actually it kinda of was there after my test log on/off. I tried a dry run of doing that here at home, and it does not work well. It freezes when I try to type a reply offline and cancels the message before allowing me to go back to the offline in box. I am using internet Gmail. So, I guess you suggest setting up a live email account? I will try that and if it works it will be great...but hard to get folks to learn a new email address foer me since ive had the same one for years. Gmail (google) seems to be having more problems these days. If I am missing a step with gmail, please let me know. MANY MANY THANKS!!!
kathy
You do not need to set up a new email address if you use Windows Live. Windows Live is actually the easiest to set up. It will find the POP3 and SMTP address and the port numbers needed to link up with you Gmail account.

Take care,
Mike
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Old December 9th, 2010, 08:10 AM
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Default still cant access email once offline

I feel like the guys in the movie "city slickers"..."by now the cows know how to do this!" But I still can't get it to work. here is what I've done. Log on to internet, open gmail, update gmail, log off internet with gmail page open....it wont let me see or open more than a few (that I guess are hanging in the cache memory) after Ive logged off. It says it needs the connection to access my email, so obviously its not downloading to my computer. I also tried a new email...I set up a windows live email account and tried same procedure. That also will not allow me to view any emails once I have logged off the internet. With my smart phone it does work exactly as ya'll explain, but I can't get that to work with my netbook. I have windows xp and do not use outlook (it have never worked right anyway). So, my question is, what am I doing wrong that it is not really downloading the email somewhere onto my computer like a smartphone (pop server) does? I know just enough to get me in trouble it seems. Leaving on Epic in 2 days so REALLY thankful to whoever can help! We have to be able to check email for the sale of our home which is in the middle of our cruise! Whew! THANKS! kathy
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Old December 9th, 2010, 08:14 AM
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Thanks Mike! Unfortunately, I feel like the guys in the movie "city slickers"..."by now the cows know how to do this!" But I still can't get it to work. here is what I've done. Log on to internet, open gmail, update gmail, log off internet with gmail page open....it wont let me see or open more than a few (that I guess are hanging in the cache memory) after Ive logged off. It says it needs the connection to access my email, so obviously its not downloading to my computer. I also tried a new email...I set up a windows live email account and tried same procedure. That also will not allow me to view any emails once I have logged off the internet. With my smart phone it does work exactly as ya'll explain, but I can't get that to work with my netbook. I have windows xp and do not use outlook (it have never worked right anyway). So, my question is, what am I doing wrong that it is not really downloading the email somewhere onto my computer like a smartphone (pop server) does? Not sure how to access your suggested pop etc using my netbook. I need a steps for dummies I guess. I know just enough to get me in trouble it seems. Leaving on Epic in 2 days so REALLY thankful to whoever can help! We have to be able to check email for the sale of our home which is in the middle of our cruise! Whew! THANKS! kathy
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Old December 9th, 2010, 02:21 PM
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I always carry a laptop when we cruise. Because we ALWAYS arrive a day pre cruise I use it to contact family when we arrive safety.
Also download all photos on a daily basis to the laptop and copy to portable
hard drive.
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Old December 9th, 2010, 03:29 PM
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I take my I Pod touch and use the free wifi in Starbucks etc. to check my emails etc It is also loaded with books/films etc for transatlantic flights.

I also carry spare memory cards for my digital camera.

All round less weight
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