There’s nothing quite like traveling abroad. The excitement to explore a new place, seeing the sights, learning the history, and being immersed in the culture. But traveling outside of your home country can be tough in regards to staying connected with your friends, family, and the world (read: social media/internet).
In 2014 when my mom and I traveled to London and Brussels, we opted for the lowest end international add-on plan for our phones, so we’d be able to stay connected to loved ones when we weren’t connected to hotel Wi-Fi, and really, the safety net of being able to use our phones for navigation, or whatever else came up that we might need it for. But when you’re used to having gigabytes of data per month and then all of a sudden you’re restricted to like 100 megabytes, it’s kind of a struggle. I felt like I was walking on eggshells every time I used data and the majority of the time, we kept our phone services switched off until we absolutely needed them. And even then, we reached our limit and it was rough.
One year later, as we were gearing up for our second annual Europe trip, I reevaluated our options and decided to try something different this time around. And now after having done so, I’ll never travel internationally without Tep Wireless again!
Tep is a handheld device that acts as a portable Wi-Fi hotspot, small enough to fit in your pocket or handbag! Rather than paying for a specific amount of data to use, you pay by the day (in advance) at about $10/day.
How It Works
So, how does it all work? It’s incredibly easy! First, check out the coverage map to make sure your destination(s) is/are on the list. The good news is their list is pretty lengthy, so chances are where you’re going will be covered! Next, select the number of days to see the price. For example, 10 days in Europe costs $99.50. You can also pay extra to have a portable charger for the device and/or adding insurance.
A couple days before your trip, your Tep will arrive in a travel case, complete with everything you need! The actual Tep device, a charging cord, and a wall charger. They also include an info card with ways to contact the company, should you have any problems along the way.
Once you’ve finally made it to your international destination, simply power the device on, and you’re ready to go! You’ll have a unique password and network name to connect with, ensuring that the network stays exclusive to you. To start your usage, simply follow the prompts on the screen and with a couple easy steps (really just clicking “ok”), you’ll be connected.
- About 8 hours of battery (when in use)
- Connects up to 5 devices
- Powered by leading mobile operators worldwide
- An added shipping cost for the device to be mailed to you and for you to mail it back ($30 total if in the US)
- You have to reconnect every 24 hours
- Some areas can be a little spotty (e.g. out in the countryside or in the mountains)
How do you stay connected while traveling abroad?