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Old 02-10-2012, 09:01 PM   #1
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Telecommuting while cruising ?

My wife's work is all telecommuting. We are talking about doing cruising up and down the East Coast. I suspect mostly waterway or not too far offshore.

She is wondering if it is a reality to be underway and still remain connected to the internet. I am a neanderthal in all things internet related so she suspect when I tell her " I'm sure it will be fine".*

Anyone have any experience in this? Any advice as to the best way for her to stay connected?*

Many thanks,



Sabre 36

Charleston, SC

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Old 02-10-2012, 09:19 PM   #2
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RE: Telecommuting while cruising ?

I would think in most of the ICW it would not be much of an issue. I have verizon with an unlimited plan and an option that allows me to tether my laptop through my phone. (phone send the internet to the computer). It works pretty much everywhere in Florida up to a few miles offshore.

We work from our boat for 4 to 6 weeks in the Bahamas. We have an internet antenna. It works OK, but not like in the states.

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Old 02-10-2012, 09:31 PM   #3
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RE: Telecommuting while cruising ?

I own half of a aerospace centric CNC machine shop.

My responsibility is to program 7 milling machines and 2 lathes several times a day. I do it all from the main cabin of my DeFever while cruising up and down the east coast and the Chesapeake.

I use both a Verizon and ATT smart phone tethered to my PC. I only need one, the other is insurance.

Over the years I've learned where I can expect a weak or un-reliable signal. I work around it. That happens mostly in NC.

Palm Coast FL.
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Old 02-11-2012, 12:54 AM   #4
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Telecommuting while cruising ?

We have set up our 4788 bayliner to do just that. We own a wholesale electrical parts distributorship.*It's just*the two of us taking orders and sending them to our warehouse for shipping. Being out of contact isn't an option.**We're basically shut down if we cannot answer the phone and access the internet.

We used a two pronged approach. Like others we have our cellular access. We have a sim card that is in the laptop, wireless printer,*etc...

We travel frequently out of cellular range (We boat out of Seward Alaska). We solved this issue with a KVH V3 satellite communications system. With this we have voice and internet world wide. The system wasn't cheap at around $14K, but we think it was well worth it. It was also a legitimate business expense and with the current tax laws we were able to capitalize it in the year of purchase.

From a legal standpoint it is owned by our business, and used by us, the employees to conduce a necessary business function while away from the office.

FYI, to get the voice to work out we log into our Cisco PBX at the office and forward inbound sales calls to either the cell phone or the satellite phone depending on where we are. We just bought the new VOIP PBX and are going to try out a IP phone and see how it works in a couple of months. If that works then we'll just have a normal desktop phone on board.

For corporate data access we use a Cisco EzVPN link back to the office network. All of our shares are available along with access to e-mail, fax etc... We did find out that Quickbooks doesn't work well over a remote link. something about the latentcy of the link. We just grab a copy of our company file then put it on the server when we get back.

Another thing we're thinking about is adding a Cisco router to the boat. We could then get a GSM based modem like the globesurfer 3 and tie it to one WAN port of the router and the KVH to the other. Then all we'd have to do is "prefer" the gsm link over the KVH to avoid the fairly high cost per MB of the KVH system.

If you are always within cellular range then of course the cellular voice and data system is your cheapest route. If you travel out of cellular range, the the KVH VSAT systems are the way to go.

-- Edited by ksanders on Saturday 11th of February 2012 01:59:42 AM

-- Edited by ksanders on Saturday 11th of February 2012 02:10:12 AM
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:16 AM   #5
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RE: Telecommuting while cruising ?

For the ICW I would think you could get by with a rogue wave wifi booster antenna. They can grab a wifi hotspot from a few miles out if you can snag an unsecure one which is often available. Not sure I would rely on an unsecure hotspot for a primary point of connection but it would be a very good back up system. BillyIII here on this forum is a wifi guru on boats- he may see this thread and reply?
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:09 AM   #6
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RE: Telecommuting while cruising ?

Dougcole wrote:
We work from our boat for 4 to 6 weeks in the Bahamas. We have an internet antenna. It works OK, but not like in the states.
*I'm going to the Abacos in May and would like to get internet access primarily for weather info. Can you explain how your internet antenna works? Are you picking up free internet hot spots?

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