Part of the fun of going on vacation? These days, it’s letting everyone know that you went on vacation. And there is no better way to let people know you had a blast on your cruise than with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and other apps that help you keep in touch back home while you are away.
Of course, there is just one major issue. There are no cell towers in the middle of the ocean. And without service to your phone, social media apps are useless.
The good news? Every modern cruise ship offers wi-fi connectivity on board, making it simple — although maybe expensive — to connect to your favorite apps.
Using Wi-Fi to Connect to Facebook, Instagram, and More
If you’ve ever stayed at a hotel or passed through an airport, then you’re likely familiar with hooking up and using wi-fi in these locations. You typically connect to the provided service, and have to acknowledge terms and conditions (and possibly pay) to then access the Internet.
It’s the same principle on a cruise ship.
Once on the ship, you’ll hook up to the wi-fi and have to enter details to purchase a wi-fi package. Often you can purchase the package ahead of time for a discount. Then, you have access to apps like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and more.
The bad news? You are going to have to pay for Internet service to be able to access Facebook and other social media apps on the cruise.
The good news? If all you want to do is access social media, then the costs normally aren’t that high.
Here are details on connecting to wi-fi with the major cruise lines:
Accessing Social Media on Carnival
Carnival offers three different tier of Internet service on its ship — Social, Value, and Premium. If you’re a Facebook or Instagram fan, the Social package costs just $5 per day for your cruise and provides you with access to all of your favorite social media apps. It doesn’t include access to the rest of the web.
Accessing Social Media on Royal Caribbean
Royal Caribbean’s VOOM Internet service doesn’t have tiers like rival Carnival. Instead, it offers two packages — “Surf”, which provide access to most things you would need (including social media) and “Surf+Stream”, which has streaming capabilities for things like Netflix included. Rates vary, but expect to spend about $15 per day for the service.
Accessing Social Media on Norwegian Cruise Lines
Unlike Carnival and Royal Caribbean, Norwegian offers two different types of Internet access to get on social media apps. The first is an unlimited plan that costs a pricey $30 per day for most cruises. The second plan is a “minutes” plan, with an option for 100 minutes for $75. Either plan will let you access Facebook, Instagram, and other apps.
One thing to note is that while expensive, Norwegian often has offers of free Internet as an incentive to book your cruise. This can mean you get free service for your trip if you book one of these specials.
Accessing Social Media on Other Cruise Lines
If you want to use apps on other cruise lines, the story is the same — hook your phone up to the wireless connection, pay your fee, and access the Internet as you would at home. Just keep in mind that each cruise line may have little differences in what’s offered. Some might offer plans with only access to social media, while others might charged based on data used.
No matter which cruise line you sail or social media app you use, just remember that you are on vacation. Enjoy the experience and don’t get too caught up living life behind the phone!