Our Old RV Internet Pal, The Verizon Mifi 2200 – Not The 4G LTE!

Our Pal, Verizon Mifi 2200


Honestly, I kid you not…our Verizon MiFi 2200 3G story was as challenging as driving the motorhome with the windshield drapes closed…believe me, we’ve tried it (just kidding, just kidding – Robin, the Jokester…that’s me).

So rv internet on the road? This is the one expense that has always been a must for us, providing communication, income working online and a place for our cat to lie on, when the laptop is closed and lying on the bed. Very important stuff………

So here is the scoop. Back in 2009, we tried tethering our cell phone instead of using a mobile hotspot. It was a nuisance and we just didn’t like it. Plus, if we lost our phone, we lost internet as well. So we made the switch early on to a 3G device, the 2200 mifi.

DISCLAIMER: For those of you who know nothing about wireless internet, nor do you care to, you might still find our story amusing. I know nothing about this stuff except that I need it (which makes me a bit resentful sometimes!). I always thought a “g” meant grams – 3 grams of mifi service, whoopie…see, don’t worry that this is too technical, it isn’t.

Ok…back to the story. I like to work on the bed in the back bedroom, with a little lap tray and windows open wide…a comfy setting. Once upon a time, I placed the little 2200 mifi in the window frame, to get a good signal. Then my adorable spouse came to visit me (awwwww…). He leaned back and we heard a loud “crunch.” The jack on the mifi was dead, fell out, and died instantly.

So what do people do? Of course, call Verizon…to endure a confusing journey through “you are eligible for an upgrade” and “which line do you want to use” and “we’ve changed our plans since you last checked in”…blah, blah, blah.

Ok, so going with the cheapest plan, we had used 3g service, which was apparently hip and cool only 2 years ago…now we were virtually DINOSAURS needing to switch to a 4G LTE IMMEDIATELY to spare us the humiliation of being uncool, I’m guessing. As my teenager would say, “WHATEVER!”

So we took the bait. Now let me tell you, this saga went on for MONTHS, but I will make it brief:

SUMMARY OF PSYCHOSIS:

Told we need new 4g LTE device, to get lightning-fast 4g service (sure.). Would get the device for FREE! (right…they’ll make up the difference somewhere). One problem, our cheap $35 data plan is no longer available…the cheapest is $50 for 5GB (now that isn’t grams, haha…that is gigabytes…and if you go over, you are in BIG TROUBLE mister…and you will pay!). Fine, $15 more a month, but we could use the extra gb’s…plus free device…super. We get the new device, it is AWFUL. First, we are never in an urban area and this new 4g network (if you look on a map, it looks like 3 cities get it in the nation…sarcasm, by the way) does nothing for us. Second, if you read the news, it has been plagued with problems and keeps making customers get zero service. Third, Verizon would not listen to us on one very important point:

They say that if you are in a 3g area, and 4g goes down due to problems (of which there are many), you won’t be affected..only if in a 4g area. BULL. Every time 4g fell on its knees, we lost internet 100% right along with them. We gave it months, as they said that wasn’t possible. Regardless, our old little 2200 mifi was gone, our internet stunk now and we were paying $15 more a month! Ummm…and this is cheap rv living, where we share our secrets on how to spend MORE MONEY? Ugh.

Well, this went on and on until I started going a bit postal – so we went online and bought a NEW, “OLD” 2200 hotspot, 3g device…it arrived and we are all reunited once more. If you care, we always find it cheaper to buy the device elsewhere, and the link in our first sentence is to the exact new device we got for only $35 and free shipping.

I forgot to add that we were told that 3g devices weren’t an option anymore, etc…which is untrue. So if you are considering a mifi hotspot, go with 3 grams, not 4 (haha). Also, because we switched to 4g for a brief time, we lost our $35 month (conveniently, no longer grandfathered in) so got our old device but paying more! Yes, upsetting…but life is too short to waste on battling the “greed cancer” you see everywhere.

A helpful hint: If you need internet and use it a lot, you can’t count on free wifi at rv parks or sitting at McDonald’s. We need rv internet access daily and it is expensive. But fortunately, we have very few bills, so we just accept we need it and pay accordingly. Just take the money out of the cat food fund (just KIDDING!).

 


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