We are now for more than six months on the road and unfortunately had to realise that the supply with Wifi in hotels or apartments leaves a lot to be desired.
When asked whether Wifi is provided normally the answer is: “Yes.” So far so good. Apart from the fun fact that we Meurers normally get the room, where there is no reception; the provided bandwidth is sometimes ridiculous.
A little bit of internet is like a little bit pregnant
Furthermore it is extremely annoying when there is wifi provided but in one or the other way restricted or limited. We came across funny versions during the last months:
you can receive e-mails but cannot send any
certain sites are blocked like google, dropbox, Facebook and co., medium, buzzfeed, onlinebanking, onlineshops, and much more
hotels own site and others were blocked but questionable sites could be reached
no excess to our own cloud server
no wifi after 11 pm!
access time limited to 3 hours
For some holiday-makers it might be ok that he can only read his mails – though we think that he might also want to answer them.
We are digital
For us unfortunately things are different. We are depending on it. Apart from publishing stories and photos and wanting access to our own blog and some platforms we now live “digitally”. We are so to say digital nomads. Therefore the use of a functioning wifi with a suitable bandwidth is essential for us.
Internet access is our umbilical cord
Let's take mail for example. We have a registered address but we are never there. But our mail arrives there. Kind enough it is scanned and forwarded to us. Among it there are matters concerning health insurance, tax office or other important things. Therefore we need access to them.
Everything that we receive in paper we take pictures of and save them. We cannot carry around files. But we need access to these photos or exchange them with others. Let's talk about online banking. If this is blocked and we cannot pay our health insurance in time it has negative consequences for us. We are not ‘back home' in a week and can take care of these matters. Yes we are also on Facebook and twitter and google once in a while but one week without a connection to our bank is extremely difficult for us.
So the internet access is like our umbilical cord. We need it. Therefor a shut down at 11 pm or a reduction is a catastrophe for us.
Wifi yes, but what about bandwidth?
Also bandwidth is a problem. “We provide wifi” does not say anything about the bandwidth. And furthermore even when the download speed is sufficient, the upload is a weak point.
Why upload is so important for us
Upload is very important for us because we want and have to send photos and texts around the world. That is the reason for booking us. We blog, tweet and post on Facebook about the hotel, the destination or topics we have to deal with with more than one photo. So it adds up to quite some MBs. If we cannot publish them it is more than annoying for everyone involved!
Wir bloggen, twittern, facebooken etc über das Hotel,
First thing we do after moving is a speed test. We use the app hotelwifitest or speedtest.net. When you talk to the hotel owners about the bandwidth most of them are astonished. Others lament to us about their problems with the providers or that they have to use the expensive satellite connection.
Talking about costs. Wifi comes not normally without costs. We had already 5 Euros per device and week or 2,50 Euros per device and day. But the most annoying was this here:
(Translation: Dear guests, as we here in … can only get a sufficient internet connection via a permanent line which costs several hundred Euros we thank you for your understanding, that we charge for the access. Prices: 1-day ticket: 3,50 €, 2-day ticket: 7,00 €, duration ticket (3 days and longer): 10,00 €)
This is really not comprehensible. Then they could as well write: “We have some 10.000 Euros personnel costs, therefore we ask for 5 Euros per day for the room service.” The costs for providing internet access via wifi should be operating costs. A couple of hundred Euros might be frills and furbelows compared to the running costs of the spa or other free offers for hotel guests.
This also means that there is a lack of significance. I rather buy flower decoration for some hundred Euros each month or supply my staff with expensive traditional costumes…
We have to keep out
There is also a certain educational attitude: The guest should vacation and not stare into this device. The fear and mistrust of and against this ‘internet' is massive. Sometimes we stumble upon such notices:
(Translation: Yes, we are old fashioned. Please refrain from using your mobile phone on behalf of our guests in the restaurant. Thank you)
Our mobile “makeshift”
In case that the house wifi is not sufficient, we still have our “handbag-router”. But depending on where we stay reception might be bad or there is even none. It is definitely nice to live in the middle of nature, but sometimes it has disadvantages; at least for us.
That was the sloooooooooowest we had so far. Can you call that bandwidth at all?
It seems there is still something in disorder. Somehow we thought in the year 2015 it would already be different…
How about you?
What are your experiences with wifi while travelling?
We are now for several weeks on the road and it was quickly clear what I miss very much: a washing machine. Even if you do not like in every day life to do the laundry with all its tasks we are missing those tasks now.
With you own washing machine you can do your laundry whenever you want. Sometimes I startet a washing program five times a week though we are only 2 persons in our household. Okay; towels, sheets, curtains and carpets drop out. But still there are clothes to wash.
At each new accommodation the question is not only: „Is there a WIFI?“ (that’s another story) but also: „Is there a washing machine?“. Most hotels or apartments do not offer such a service. So it’s is good will that our hosts allows us to use their private washing machine. That worked quite well so far. I could use the machine of the mother in lay or a hotel did our laundry in their hotel laundry. Sometimes we got our laundry ready made back. Wow! What a service!
But I do not feel comfortable with asking for this favour because I would like to do the work of peg out washing and folding myself. I’d rather just use the machine.
Very quickly I had to pay dearly when my 100% silk gawn was not smooth and shiny any more after laundry but felt rather like a piece of sandpaper. What happened? After some googeling I think a color detergent was the problem.
Of course we did not take detergents with us while waltzing. We had to reduce our luggage to the absolutely necessary. Detergent was not on our list. So I used what was on hand. And that once has been a special color detergent.
I had washed my silk piece several times in the washing machine before. It is made for that. But we used for the last years only washing nuts. Guess what is in our luggage now? Right! Washing Nuts!
But that was too late for my silk gawn. While surfing though I found a tipp. And that was: Butter Milk!
Okay! Before I give my lovely peace to the used clothing collection I can as well try the butter milk! No sooner said than done! I bought butter milk and put the garment into it. 0,5 l butter milk with 5l of water. I hang it up wet. And… Voila! It worked. It is not as shiny as before but I can wear it again. Hallelujah!
This experience and the steady questioning for a washing possibility lead to a research about the subject washing. One shop keeper told us about Merino. It is wool and cools in the summer and warms in the winter. And it resists dirt and does not hold any odor. That means you do not need to wash a Merino-shirt after a long hike because it was sweaty. On the contrary: Frequent washing is not advisable. The t-shirt should be ventilated over night and can be warn again.
We are testing this now. We bought Merino shirts and shirts with silver in it. This is also supposed to stop smelling. So we experiment with those and they seem to work.
We only want 100 % Merino without plastic parts. Though there are interesting approaches with fibres made out of eucalyptus or bamboo…
Unfortunately there are only outdoor models. Not really beautiful ones. Though we found whiles searching this Finish Shop here: They have really nice clothes. Everything Merino. The disadvantage: It is only for men!!!
So, if you have tipps or hints about clothing whiles traveling or nice garments for women let us know and write a comment.
It's done. We are on our way. Waltzing.
The last preparations were once again quite stressy. To give away all our food and spices was very difficult. We should talk about stockpiling…
Packing was another challenge. A lot of things had to be left behind. Again big sacks were filled. Incredible! A small comfort is that we did not throw away our things but gave them to very nice people and know that they are welcome and will be used. If this would have landed in the trash… Awful!
But finally everything was packed and even stored in the car.
Rosalinde was on board…
And we started.
Our first stop is in the region Salzburgerland. Driving there felt strange and not real. It was not really clear that we will be going on and on and on. Maybe it will finally come to our minds. And maybe our nerves will calm down.
In Niedernsill we found a very nice host and a cosy place to stay.
Gasthöf Kröll is much nicer than presented on the website. Therefore first thing we did, was making HDR-photos. The culinary part is also very good. Ralf Kröll bakes his own bread and smokes fish. Of course we will report on that.
Bureaucracy is still horrible. One cannot communicate with us through emails because of data privacy reasons. But we can share our social security quickly through a mail, because it is needed. Then it is no problem. With the paperwork we spent one or two hours this morning.