Do the buses in North America have free wifi?

24 Mar 2013 Jess asked


I've tried looking on the forums, and I keep getting mixed answers.. so if i take an ipad or laptop, do the buses on the north american contikis have wifi? Or would it be better to get a mobile data connection?

  • 3 Apr 2013 Cruisey said


    I’ve done both the GS & GN 2-3 years ago. Unless the buses have changed dramatically since then, you won’t get free wifi on the bus. You should more then likely get free wifi at most of the hotels that you stay at.

  • 10 Apr 2013 jarks said


    Did the Grand Southern in November. No wifi on board. You can try mobile wifi if you want but most hotels have a connection so I wouldn’t even bother. Get a local SIM for your phone if you really need internet on board… The buses do have power though (not at all seats) so you can charge your phone if the internet drains it. Chances are you’ll be sleeping on the bus anyway so you probably wouldn’t need internet.

  • 21 Apr 2013 CourtneyandDoug said


    Not on the bus but most of the hotels had free wifi either in lobby and some had wifi in rooms free – on the Wild Western tour

  • 9 Jun 2013 MichaelClark said


    I’ve been told that they have been trialing wifi and I think they may have started rolling it out early this year. So I was told by some people who did a contiki in NZ.
    Other option is which I will probably do as I’m looking at doing the grand northern next year.

  • 9 Jun 2013 Jess said


    I’ve found this website which sells T-Mobile prepaid sim which I’m thinking of getting:

  • 16 Jun 2013 Crawf33 said


    I bought a T-Mobile prepaid SIM via a website like that a few years ago and got a rude shock when it wouldn’t work once I arrived. I took it to a T-Mobile store and was told they couldn’t do anything about it; it was locked and basically a dud. You might have much better luck heading to a T-Mobile store in your first day or two and picking one up there – it’s better for peace of mind at least!

  • 16 Jun 2013 Jess said


    Yeah, I’ve done some more research and am just going to wait til I’m there, visit walmart and buy a straight talk sim, seems like the best deal for prepay!

  • 16 Jun 2013 Crawf33 said


    To be fair I’ve used the T-Mobile SIM on my last three extended US vacations and the $60/m unlimited talk and text deal is pretty useful for my purposes, although I have a bunch of friends/family there so I might just get more mileage out of it than others.

    I think T-Mobile offers free international texts too? Which could be handy.

    Edit: Holy crap that Straight Talk SIM card looks awesome. Good find!

  • 16 Jun 2013 Jess said


    Yeah, last time I was in the states I used Simple Mobile but it’s hard finding a retailer over there. Straight Talk has $45 unlimited text/talk and data which is awesome. Don’t really need international text cos I’ll just use Viber or something. It just sucks because the prepaid plans are for 30 days and I’ll be there for about 37 days so thats annoying!

  • 16 Jun 2013 Crawf33 said


    What’s the catch with the unlimited data? I know with the T-Mobile deal it was 100MB at 4G speeds then it dropped back to 2G, which was a bit of a dud but still mostly useable.

  • 16 Jun 2013 Jess said


    I’m not sure, but I don’t even have 4G coverage where I live so it’s not like I’ll be missing it anyway lol!

  • 16 Jun 2013 Jess said


    Walmart have so many different sim options exclusive to them so I think I’ll check it all out when I get there!

  • 3 Aug 2013 Todd said


    @micheal clark, your right about NZ, i did NZ in may they have free wifi on the bus and then i did a europe contiki in june in which you have to pay for wifi on the bus, hope that helps peoples.

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