StromTrooper banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
816 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I’m about to take a month long trip out west. Does anyone have any first hand experience renting a satellite phone or some other middle-of-nowhere communication device?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,335 Posts
I've used sat phones a number of times. Very handy if you need help and a lot of fun if you have a strong budget (ring, ring, "You'll never guess where I am ...")
If you are on a budget and are just interested in emergency coverage there are texting devices that you can rent. You can consider arranging your rental in advance for pickup when you get to the edge of nowhere. Shop around and negotiate for rates. It is still a bit like cell phone were in the beginning. Understand the contract and lok for the tricks.

Last but not least, insure it through your homeowner / renter insurance not the phone provider.
"Renters / homeowners insurance can also cover property when it’s not even in your home, like if your laptop is stolen while you’re on vacation; since it’s considered insured property, it’s still protected whether it’s inside your dwelling or not." Some times you have to tel your ins company in advance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26 Posts
I rented a sat phone for a trip. Other than a test call we never used it (so that's a good thing).

Then I got a InReach device. You can modify the plan ... so add in features for a big trip, then take them back off (and lower the monthly fee) when big trip is over. I think you can also freeze it for a period of time.

You can send pre-configured msgs for no charge ... like "Trip going well, no issues" or "Got to camp, all fine". Then you can text msgs, and different plans have different included number of text (can't remember, like cheap plan is 10 free text a month, then some cents for each text over that ... or get a plan that has 50 free a month, etc). And if you want, you can turn on the breadcrumb type feature that shows where you've gone and then share that out so certain people can see it. My wife & daughter admitted they would never look at the breadcrumb thing so I never used that.

Oh, when you send a msg out, the receiver gets your GPS coordinates of your location which is pretty cool ... they can click on it and a map comes up showing where you sent the msg from.

Texting from the device is fairly clumsy, but you can pair the device with your smartphone and then type away on the smartphone to send more detailed texts out.

And then you also have the SOS "send in the helicopter" button if someone gets hurt badly.

You can also rent these devices (or a SPOT) as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
670 Posts
I've used sat phones for work (iridium) which works well, but they are still expensive to use.

Worried about emergency comms or do you intend to use it daily? If just for emergencies an inreach mini paired with a cell phone does the trick. Plans can be suspended when not in use.


Sent from my SM-G930W8 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
If you are looking for something that can be used in an emergency or case something relatively minor happens you could use a SPOT device.
I always carry this with me when on my motorcycle, hiking, kayaking and other outdoor activity where I may be in a location where cellular coverage may be questionable. I never ever go out without it. I have have had all three generations of this device and thankfully never had to use it.
You can set it up so it will send out messages every x minutes and people can track you location or you can set it up so when you press one of the buttons it will email a "OK" message to whomever you set it up in advance.
If sh** ever does go down you can use the SOS button on the device and the folks at SPOT will send rescue for you. It will also notify people that you designate in advance that you have a problem. The SOS would not be used for a breakdown situation. You can read about it on their web site.
This type of device should be mandatory carry items for anyone who does anything outdoors/backwoods related. The amount of time it would save rescue crews from finding people would be extraordinary.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
318 Posts
Super big fan of InReach, have carried one for years. They work well, help out in trying to figure out where you are and trying to go in the mountains on dirt roads that are not well marked. Way better than Spot as you can actually send and receive with it. Highly recommend!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,335 Posts
On my cross country trips I have used SpotWalla for limited folks (friends & family) to follow my progress, route and if needed an SOS.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,713 Posts
I carry a PLB I used to carry a Spot. I have an ACR ResQLink

A PLB is the most reliable emergency beacon. Much more powerful than an InReach or a Spot. Also it uses a more robust system of satellites that are monitored by government Search and rescue organizations not commercial entities.

The PLB is a one time cost no monthly fees. It's for a no kidding emergency you activate it and the Calvary is coming. It does not have tracking I use a phone app for that. No 2 way messaging.

When we had kids at home I used the Spot because my wife was concerned about my whereabouts. Now that we're empty nesters she's not that interested in my location, hah!
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top