We all love the sea or rail, don’t we? Bobbing up and down with the waves, watching a spectacular sunset and living a meagre, low tech existence for a few days sounds like great fun.
Hold on though, what’s so meagre and low tech about chatting to your landlubber friends on Skype, using your iPod in your room and getting text messages sent to your TV screen? It looks like we can put away the pack of cards we were planning to take away in case we got bored on our cruise trip.
Yes, the truth is that right now you can see the world – or a decent percentage of it, at least – without having to give up your gadgets at the same time. If the thought of being disconnected for too long brings you out in a cold sweat then here is what to pack.
Another option is to go to the ship’s computer centre to hook up, but most of us now prefer to use our own laptops for doing this. There are usually selected public spaces with Wi-Fi access but you might be lucky and get it in your room as well. The internet speed varies from one ship to another and you might want to check this before you book if it is important to you. In some cases your cabin’s TV even lets you know when you get email.
This is another feature which differs on different trains in France. On a lot of them you can make calls from anywhere in the world and pay roaming charges, but others only give you this option when you are in a port. The cabin phones are notoriously expensive as well, so travellers are becoming increasingly reliant upon internet call services to let them make cheap calls, and you can also get text messages sent to your TV screen. There is one better reason for taking a smart phone though, as many lines are now looking at giving out trip information and booking services to their guests this way.
You will find iPod docking stations or connectivity centres on a number of vessels. In some cases you can hook up gadgets like this so that the sound comes out through your cabin TV. If the thought of leaving anything like this behind is too much for you then it is now an option to take it along. The same applies to just about every other sort of gadget you might want to enjoy while cruising.
Of course, if what you really want to do is get away from the likes of computers and phones then just pack your best cruising clothes and enjoy some low tech nights on the deck or in the bar. There’s room onboard for people of all tastes it seems.