This post is sponsored by Telstra.
These days going on holidays does not have to mean being without internet access. I love that! It means I can stay in touch with my friends, family and business even while I am enjoying time away from home with the kids. With a husband who works long hours there are not many times in the year that we get to go away for more than a couple of days, but each Christmas we spend time with our extended family. This year we got to go away for almost a week and were lucky enough to receive a Telstra 4G mobile device to take with us.
I’m used to using social media and the internet through my phone when I’m out and about. I can check into Facebook and see questions about my Shop on email but there is a limit to how easy this is on that tiny screen. So when we go anywhere for more than a day or so I take my laptop. In the past I have tethered my phone to my laptop to access the net but it is very slow and painful. Using the 4G device was like using my wifi at home! Oh my! I could access multiple pages at once and answer a few quick questions and be off again in 5 minutes. Plus I could link my phone to the 4G device so it wasn’t using up my limited data. Win-win! All my Facebook check-ins (just to make sure my peeps were all ok, of course) and Instagram uploads were quick and easy.
The kids were super excited to have some access too. They love Dad’s iPad but when we are away there is a limit to the games they can play with it because it does not have an in-built internet connection. This year they were able to log into the 4G device and play whichever games they would at home. You can have up to 5 devices linked to the 4G device at once and they all link via wifi so it is easy. It was perfect for those late afternoons when everyone was getting a little tired and cranky and it was too hot to run around outside.
We also found it useful for a new toy. Little Miss received a Furby Boom (affiliate link) for Christmas which is a furry little animal that chatters away and interacts with its owner. It also can connect to an iPod and the play is extended with the free app. I didn’t realise that there would need to be an app download to play with this toy, but with the 4G device on hand it was no problem at all. The download was just as quick as it would have been at home and one little girl was all set to play with her new toy! (Aside: I may regret the Furby toy though… it doesn’t turn off without removing the batteries and it chatters a lot! Sigh. But she loves it.)
As for my own Christmas present, hubby was able to show me a picture thanks to the 4G device. Yes, that’s right. I said “a picture”. He realised too late that he couldn’t actually buy it in time so instead had to order it. Sigh. But it will be fabulous when it arrives. It is a new lens for my camera so I’m looking forward to playing with it.
A little more about the Telstra 4G device:
This little device comes with 5 gigabytes of data ready to use. You simply activate it on the Telstra website with the information on your box and you’re good to go. In fact I was a little worried when mine came in the mail without any instructions at all but it really was as easy as entering the codes and that was it. The data is available for 30 days before it expires, but if you want more data or time, there are a whole bunch of plans you can sign up for on the Telstra website.
No, this may not be the cheapest way to get internet access and I wouldn’t say it is value for money as an everyday means of surfing the web – there are much cheaper ways to access the net long-term.
But for a holiday or business trip, a device like this is reliable and convenient. I have used Internet access via hotels when I’ve been to conferences and I have not always found it reliable or fast, plus I’m always concerned about the security. Next time I’ll be using my 4G device instead as I know it is secure and fast.
Other ways I see us using this device on future holidays:
- for checking out opening times of venues and attractions
- for booking tickets online
- for finding accommodation and booking it
- for finding local food outlets without dragging the kids around
- for checking weather and road conditions
- for showing the kids where we are going to familiarise them (like checking out the map when we went to Taronga Zoo last year)
- for checking emails on the go
- for banking on the go
- for sharing photos
For more ideas, check out the free e-book including tips for travelling with the kids from real mums like me: http://telstra4gwifi.com.au
What would you use a Telstra 4G device for on your holidays?