As a frequent traveler, blogger, and online entrepreneur, the internet is truly an important part of my daily life, but… the tragedy of it all is that it can be very challenging to acquire reliable connection whenever I’m on the road — which regrettably happens almost ALL of the time.
Surely there were times that I scored great WiFi service in my hotel or accommodation, but more often than not, I don’t. What happens next then? I’ll be on a maddening search for a cafe, a restaurant, a coworking space, or a mall that offers a well-functioning web connection either for free or for a low price… and that can be such a hassle. Plus, it’s not like I can bring that connection with me anywhere I go — of course I could avail international roaming beforehand but it could be crazy expensive (that’s why I avoid it like the plague). Or I could also buy local mobile SIM cards, but the overall process of searching for a local shop that offers a well-shaped nano card every time I land to a new place whilst I deconstruct and reconstruct my phone makes the lazy person inside me scream at times.
So yeah, I’m always on the search for good internet when I’m traveling and it’s an experience that’s somehow akin to a ‘lottery’ and then dashed with a lot of ‘hassle’.
And it’s all thanks to Tep Wireless!
» What is Tep Wireless?
It is a wireless modem with a private network that connects up to 5 WiFi-enabled devices to 3G internet — in simple words: it provides you with a secure, consistent and fast internet connection anywhere, anytime!
Think of it like a Wi-Fi hotspot, but the difference is that you can bring it with you! Additionally, there’s no need for complicated installations, cables or software because you just need to turn it on, start it up, and connect to it.
» How does it work?
First and foremost, you need to go to Tep Wireless’ website to place your order. Determine what country or continent you’ll be traveling to, as well as the number of days that you need internet connection for.
PRICE: $9.95 per day — but the price-per-day gets cheaper the longer you rent!
COVERAGE: You can rent a Tep unit by country, by continent or for global use. It’s imperative that you decipher this beforehand because the unit cannot be used outside of its intended destination(s). If you do, it may result to surcharges.
Before checking out, you can opt to rent additional stuff like a power bank, a car charger or even insurance. And when it comes to delivery, you can either pick it up and drop it off at no cost (only if you’re in the UK) OR have it delivered and picked up (at the end of your rental period) at your address (or even at your hotel) for a fee.
TIP: It’s recommended to book your Tep Wireless unit at least 10 days prior to your travel date and shipping will then take 1-3 business days. For last-minute orders, you can still rent a Tep pocket WiFi and it will arrive latest the day before your rental starts.
Once you receive your unit, you only need to press ‘START’ once it fully boots up so that you could connect to the internet — and that’s it! This connectivity will last for 24 hours, after which you’ll need to press ‘START’ again (so yes, you need to restart your connection daily and this was a feature set so as to prevent abuse).
» Why do I love Tep Wireless?
- It’s safe and secure. Your Tep unit is NOT like a public WiFi that’s open and accessible to just about anyone, so you’re assured that hackers (for instance) won’t get into your gadget’s sensitive info. After all, it will have its unique password and you have full control as to who you’re going to share this password with. I was told that it can support 5 devices at once, but I’ve actually used it for 9 things and it still worked well! Nevertheless, it’s best to keep it under 5 or else the connection might slow down and the battery life will decrease significantly; after all, the connection speed will be technically shared across all 5.
- It’s convenient to have. Given its small size, it’s easy to bring with you wherever you go, so you absolutely don’t need to go WiFi-hunting anymore. With Tep Wireless by your side too, you will no longer get lost because you can easily access Google Maps; whereas talking to locals will be a breeze too since you can connect to Google Translate swiftly. If you need to keep in touch with friends and family, you don’t need to pay for a SIM card or pay high international data roaming charges since you can just use WhatsApp, Viber, or FaceTime for FREE — the possibilities are endless!
- It’s reliable. Tep Wireless makes it a point to connect with the biggest network operators worldwide so that you can have the fastest connection available. Along with that aim, they are offering UNLIMITED DATA too! Yep, you read that right. The speed however might start to slow down for the rest of the day once you use over 300MB of data; but, I’ve never actually went beyond 300MB and that say’s a lot because I access a LOT of websites and use a lot of apps.
- Its battery life lasts long. A Tep Wireless comes with a universal adapter and a USB cable so it’s an effortless item to recharge when you’re traveling. And once it’s fully charged, the battery lasts around 8 hours when in use and 20 hours when on standby. From my experience, it can last a day! (NOTE: You can always rent an extra battery from them for an extra fee.)
- It’s easy to use. Like I’ve already mentioned, Tep Wireless is a trouble-free device. Its backlit screen is easy to see under any lighting, and coupled with its touchpad, you can navigate through its function menu effortlessly (to check the device’s password, to refresh the connection, etc.) Rest assured, you will be sent easy-to-follow instructions on how to use it.
- It can be used in a LOT of countries. The Tep Wireless pocket WiFi is available for use in popular destinations worldwide. To see the full list, just go to their website. HOWEVER, there are still some rural or far-flung places that it’s not available in, and which they are working on acquiring (example: Greenland, Mongolia, Faroe Islands, Congo, etc.)
- It has responsive 24/7 customer service. Tep Wireless’ website has a LIVE chat function and every single time, a representative answers my queries instantly. The company also values us, its customers, very highly so if there are ever any problems, they won’t hesitate to help cancel you rental or refund your money.
- Overall: it’s better than other pocket WiFis out there! It was my first time to use a pocket WiFi when I got my own Tep Wireless device; but before declaring it as the best out there, I made it a point to try 3 other providers. So far, Tep Wireless’ connectivity, price, and service trumps the rest!
» The “cons”
~ If your rental period is too long, the price can get hefty. I actually recommend renting a Tep Wireless unit if you’re ONLY going on a trip that spans for a couple of weeks. But if you’re going out on an adventure that lasts for more than a month, the rental price for that period can get scary.
✮ So what do I recommend that you do instead? BUY a Tep Wireless unit for only $99 (click on the ‘Frequent Traveler’ tab on top). Through this way…
- You will be charged a day rate ONLY when you need to connect — this is as opposed to a fixed rental period rate wherein there can be days that you won’t really need the internet and you’ll be wasting away that day rate that you already paid for.
- You will be charged cheaper at only $8 per day.
- You can choose to pay-as-you-go (and be invoiced at the end of your week of use) or do pre-pay basis.
- You won’t have to pay for delivery and pick-up shipping costs.
~ It’s not entirely worldwide — yet. As an example, currently there a lot of countries in Africa that are not supported by Tep Wireless’ network yet. They’re still working on it though and I’m sure that in a year or two, they’ll be up and running there.
✮ So what does this tell you? Take note of the countries that you’re going to before renting a Tep pocket WiFi so that you’ll know what destinations that won’t be covered for you.
I am now utterly spoiled by Tep Wireless.
In fact, it has become one of my top travel essentials that’s always stuffed in my carry-on! And you cannot believe the number of times that it has saved me whenever there is non-existent or unreliable WiFi — which happens most of the time.
That being said, I highly suggest that you give some thought over owning OR renting a Tep Wireless unit because it can really save you from a lot of trouble if you’re a frequent traveler like me.
DISCLAIMER: Tep Wireless provided me with a free unit for review for 1 month, but the bought unit is NOT sponsored. I bought it for myself after seeing how awesome it was. Still and as always, all views that are expressed here represent only those made by myself and NOT of any other entity in their favor.
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I am Aileen Adalid. At 21, I quit my corporate job in the Philippines to travel the world. Today, I am a digital nomad (entrepreneur & travel writer) living a sustainable travel lifestyle.
My mission? To show you how it is absolutely possible to create a life of travel, and I will help you achieve that through my detailed travel guides, resources, and tips!
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CURRENTLY BASED IN: The Philippines
NEXT: Vietnam, Guam, South Korea, Taiwan, Europe
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