Laptops – Tablets – WiFI – Internet
Some hotels have on-site computers which you can use (for free or for a small fee) for internet & e-mail. Also, most places we visit have internet cafes with inexpensive computer or Wi-Fi access.
Wi-Fi is available at many locations (sometimes free or for a fee) for those of you who have an iPod Touch, tablets, netbooks, web-enabled smart-phones, etc. Starbucks has free Wi-Fi in Europe. Be aware, however, that at many hotels, the Wi-Fi is slow, and with 100 AMA students trying to Skype at the same time, internet access is often very slow or intermittent.
Tablets are OK to bring, but be very careful if you make that choice. We move fast, and taking an expensive tablet might be more weight and responsibility than you need. See below:
Some people have carried full-size laptops, but it’s a definite risk and adds weight! Do you really want to be lugging it up to the top of the long, steep hill to the fortress? What if you drop it in a canal? What if you leave it behind at a Cafe? NOT RECOMMENDED!
If you do choose to take a laptop or tablet, be sure you check carefully about the cost of Data Plans – they can be VERY EXPENSIVE – some charge $20/MB – which could cost you $40 just to check your email or download a photo!