If you’ve been reading my posts about connecting to the Internet as you travel, you know that I love my satellite dish! But, I also am a big advocate of Wi-Fi and of cellular connections to the Internet. If you absolutely, positively need the Internet – you need to use all three methods. When we’re in the forest and the trees block our satellite dish, we’ll use our cell phone tethered to the computer and connect thru Verizon. If the Verizon signal isn’t available, we’ll find a Wi-Fi hotspot somewhere.
using tethered cell phone to connect to Internet
The tethered cell phone is a fabulous option for occasional use because it does not involve a separate contract.  It’s a feature of your phone service, called Verizon Broadband Access Connect.Even though it has the same monthly price tag as the data card at $60/mo, you can turn it On and Off at will and pay the prorated amount for the time it was On. It works out to roughly $2/day. We’ve had enough occasion to use this recently that I can confidently recommend it as a great way to get online – high speed.  You do need to be in a good Verizon service area. You are limited to 5Gb of data per month, but that is a LOT.

I am amazed that this works so well – and I was *really* amazed when my husband, Jim, was able to use my little cell phone as the source for Internet for a Wi-Fi hotspot last week!  The recommended way to share a cell phone’s Internet connection is by purchasing a cellular router such as the Cradlepoint.  But, we don’t have one of those, and we needed to think fast when our Satellite dish modems failed just a couple days before we were scheduled to give a class which included a segment on using Wi-Fi – and there was no Wi-Fi to be had!

Here’s what Jim did.  He tethered my little cell phone (via USB) to our server computer (a desktop in our motorhome) and got it online.  Then he turned on Internet Connection sharing for that computer running Windows XP.  I don’t know all the steps involved, but here a couple of screenshots that’ll give you the idea.
Internet Connection Sharing screenshot

Our server computer is already connected to a router which creates a small Wi-Fi hotspot, Jim then set up the classroom that was roughly 50 yards away with a bridge and another router, creating a hotspot for our class.


Wireles Bridge and router


It actually worked.  15 people could access Wi-Fi and had a decent, if not great, connection to the Internet.  Over the course of 2 days, we used about 2 gigabytes of data.


Chris Guld



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