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Old 04-16-2013, 08:42 AM   #1
labdogs42
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Cell Phones on ships?

So, what's the deal? Do I just put it in airplane mode and not use my phone? Is there a way to send texts to home cheaply? What's the most reasonable way to stay in touch with people at home and periodically check Facebook? Or should I not even think about it? Help! As you can tell by my number of DIS posts, I'm pretty addicted to having internet and cell service. I might get like this or this without it!
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Old 04-16-2013, 08:49 AM   #2
sullins5
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Depends where you are going and when you want to text!
We used our phones before we left on embarkation day while in port and in St. Thomas when off the ship, but otherwise, had them cut off. I'd check with your carrier just to make sure...it can be a costly phone call or text!
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Old 04-16-2013, 08:58 AM   #3
MikeAndNick
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Do yourself a favor and forget about the elctronics during the cruise. Forget about the world you left behind and relax.
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Old 04-16-2013, 10:49 AM   #4
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We put ours in airplane mode and just used them as iPods. I didn't miss being connected to the rest of the world, I was on vacation.
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Old 04-16-2013, 10:53 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by wendyoconnor View Post
We put ours in airplane mode and just used them as iPods. I didn't miss being connected to the rest of the world, I was on vacation.
Same here....one of the "benifits" of being on a cruise.
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:17 AM   #6
sullins5
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Just another tidbit... My dd and I cruised first time back in 2005. I really needed to tell hubs something, so I called on my cell on the ship...total time less than 10 minutes...total cost? $100.00 My hubs was like "Don't call again unless it's an emergency"..


...and we didn't
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Old 04-16-2013, 12:40 PM   #7
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We're putting ours in airplane mode, we learned our lesson when we went to Japan
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Old 04-16-2013, 01:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeAndNick View Post
Do yourself a favor and forget about the elctronics during the cruise. Forget about the world you left behind and relax.
I agree, disconnect, you're on vacation. If anybody needs to get a hold of you for an emergency they can contact the ship.
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Old 04-16-2013, 01:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by labdogs42 View Post
So, what's the deal? Do I just put it in airplane mode and not use my phone? Is there a way to send texts to home cheaply? What's the most reasonable way to stay in touch with people at home and periodically check Facebook? Or should I not even think about it? Help! As you can tell by my number of DIS posts, I'm pretty addicted to having internet and cell service. I might get like this or this without it!
I stay connected too, so I totally get where you are coming from; I usually use mine in the ports though to touch base from time to time. It depends on how long the cruise is also, a 3 or 4 night is more of a trip than a vacation to me, so staying connected is no big deal.
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:00 PM   #10
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I say this as a hard core social media/facebook/texting addict: Put the phone in airplane mode and forget about it. That's what I did on our cruise and I found it so freeing. It was weird the first day or two but then I got used to it and started to see the phone as just one less thing I had to worry about on vacation. (I did turn my phone on in ports in Florida to check in with my family and say hi to my friends but I would not have even done that if we had been in a foreign port.) I actually went so far as to tell my family not to try to contact us while we were on vacation and that if there was an emergency we would deal with it when we got home.
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:03 PM   #11
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I dont use our phone unless were in the US to avoid expensive charges. But it's a good idea to give out the ship's contact info in the blue book to loved ones back home. We found this out the hard way on the Magic. MIL passed away on our last night and family was calling our cells all night but couldn't reach us since our phones were off.
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:17 PM   #12
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I think it really depends on your carrier and the best, BEST answer to this question is to call them and ask all your questions.

I just did a live chat with Sprint and asked them every tiny detail under the sun for our cruise and I was pleasantly surprised with the answers.

For Sprint, you have to activate International roaming, which is free to do.

Then you are only charged for what you actually do. $2.99 per min for calls from the ship (Clearly TOO expensive!!) and $.50 cents a text message to send (only a nickel to receive a text). This is from the ship. The rates in the ports vary, but are comparable.

To me, the texting can be an affordable way for me to just check in with family and be available for emergencies should they need to contact me. If I shut off all those automatic text message notifications I get from Facebook, my bank, different apps, etc. then I can limit my texting to a few to my family over the course of the cruise.

Wifi would be the Disney rates on the ship, and if I can find wifi at the ports, it would be at whatever rate that is (or free with purchase at some locations in the Bahamas, I've heard about).

If I'm connected to wifi on land, and the connection is good, I can Facetime my family just to say Hi. There would be no additional charge for that. So, IMO, Sprint is reasonable. I will probably use it on our upcoming cruise.

Call your service provider and see what they offer and what the rates for you would be and plan accordingly.
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:27 PM   #13
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My last cruise, one of our dinner couples spent every night doing facetime with people back home. They talked about it at dinner all the time. It cost them probably over $1000, and they were stressed the entire time.

I spent the first day going "I wonder what's going back at home? I should connect", but resisited. The feeling went away by 24 hours and I learned to actually RELAX for once.

It's worth it to turn your phone off / airplane and forget about it. You can turn it on briefly in US territories (St Thomas, San Juan, etc). But it's a cruise - learn to let the world turn a few days without you and just relax.

If you are worried about people being able to reach you, make sure they have Disney Cruise Line's number so they can call the ship in an absolute emergency. But as others have said to me - it's not like you can DO anything about it until after the cruise, so I wouldn't even worry about that.
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