Internet on the Nieuw Amsterdam
Here's the latest word we've got from HAL regarding available Internet packages for JoCo Cruise 2020:
While on board, you can purchase daily Internet access at three different connection speeds:
- Social: $14.99/day
- Surf: $24.99/day
- Premium: $29.99/day
You can also purchase a “full voyage” (7 day) plan while on board for the following rates:
- Social: $55.99
- Surf: $79.99
- Premium: $139.99
Finally, you can purchase the above Premium “full voyage” (7-day) plan online pre-cruise via the HAL website for $111.99—a 20% savings vs. buying it on board. (Log into your booking; “Internet” is available under “Cruise Activities - Gifts and Indulgences”.)
While Internet speeds and reliability onboard JoCo Cruise have improved greatly in recent years—the Premium package apparently supports streaming—bear in mind that speeds will likely be slower than you're used to on land. Internet connection will also be available in Santo Domingo and Grand Turk, either free or for a nominal fee, at many local restaurants, shops and other areas. Again, your mileage may vary.
PREMIUM: Supports audio/video calling and streaming: Per day package $29.99
SURF: Surf your favorite sites including e-mail, news, sports and more: Per day package $24.99
SOCIAL: Access the most popular social websites and applications: Per day package $14.99
“Each package comes with an unlimited volume of data on each day of your voyage. transmission speeds for each package are subject to change depending on network usage.”
THO E-mail (January 25, 2018): Onboard Internet Internet on the Oosterdam is offered on a “per-minute” basis. You can either pay as you go for $0.75 per minute, or purchase various blocks of time at a discount:
100 minutes for $55 ($0.55/min.)
250 minutes for $100 ($0.40/min.)
500 minutes for $175 ($0.35/min.)
1000 minutes for $250 ($0.25/min.)
You can sign up for any of the above options once on board directly on your device.
Please note, especially to those new to JoCo Cruise: Internet on the ship is slow at best. You will definitely not be able to stream video, and are advised against depending on streaming audio or sending and receiving large files. Even on a “regular” cruise, connections are slow compared to what you're probably used to; and our group will have FAR higher Internet demands than a “regular” cruise. In our various ports of call, there will be restaurants, cafes and other establishments that offer free or low-cost wifi if you require a higher speed connection.
Also, when planning to use onboard Internet, it will be extremely helpful for both you and everyone else to turn off automatic backups (iCloud, Backblaze, etc.), and other programs that automatically update (such as iTunes). Doing this will greatly lower overall bandwidth usage, and will save you both time and money.
If you use onboard internet, please turn off auto-updating (App Store, iTunes, etc.) and auto-backup apps (iCloud, Backblaze, etc.)—they gobble up bandwidth and slow things down for everyone, including you. THANK YOU FOR HELPING OUT.
Onboard Internet Availability
THO email (February 8, 2017): The Westerdam offers several different paid Internet packages onboard:
- Social Plan (limited to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp): $14.99/day, $69.99/full cruise
- Enhanced Plan (general web surfing and email. Does not support streaming music or Skype): $24.99/day, $99.99/full cruise
- Premiere Plan (fastest possible connection, supports Skype video calling): $29.99/day, $139.99/full cruise.
More details are found in this handout (.pdf) which you may download and share. Let the arguing over which is the best choice commence!
FWIW: our testing on the site inspection so far indicates that the Internet on the Westerdam is the most reliable for any JCC to date. Granted, it hasn't been tested by hundreds and hundreds of nerds descending upon it at once, and it certainly isn't what anyone would describe as “zippy,” so YMMV. But so far, so good. *knock all the woods*