Running a French Holiday Gite in Rural Brittany

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Sailing to France - and found free wifi on board!

I'm currently sitting in the lounge on board a Norfolk Line ferry sailing across to France to start our 3 week holiday. The kids are off watching a magic show, Liz is fretting about the dog being all alone in the car, and I've been left to guard the luggage.

The Dover coastline has just about disappeared in the sea mist and so to my surprise I've found out that Norfolk Line have free wi-fi onboard their ferry. The download speed isn't fantastically quick and is certainly nowhere near fast enough to watch a movie over (according to a quick test I did with the BBC iplayer speed test it's rated as 73kbps download speed and between 36 and 148kbps streaming speed - i.e. similar speed to a modem), but the signal strength is good and at least it's completely free.

(As a slight technical aside it appears that Norfolk Line must route their ferry internet connection through Denmark because when I searched with Google I was presented with as the default homepage!)

Compare this to Brittany Ferries who just 2 weeks ago announced that internet access is now available across all Brittany Ferries services to France and Spain ... but that you had to "purchase access time from the information desk onboard".
No details of actual prices are on their website - but it ain't free.

Happy happy holidays !!

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