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The cost of staying connected during business travel


Whether you're traveling domestically or internationally, it's essential to stay connected when you're out of town for work. Whether searching for discount car rentals or finding directions to your next meeting place, business people are continuously using the Internet to get things done. But what happens when you can't find a Wi-Fi connection?

In December, mobile remote access service company iPass released the Wi-Fi Cost Index, which details the expenses that businesses take on when their employees don't have access to the Internet while away for work. It looks at data roaming charges that accrue when European and North American travelers must turn to their smart phones to get online.

The report highlights examples such as the story of Tom, a businessman who travels to both domestic and international destinations. During a trip to Europe, he looks for free Internet connections before turning to his phone, but still ends up spending an unbudgeted $181.27 on Internet connectivity.

The report also addresses the fact that, though many establishments offer free Wi-Fi, the connections tend to be too slow or unreliable. A simple solution to no or inadequate connectivity is to purchase a mobile hotspot or other Internet access device, which can be used anywhere from a cafe to a business car rental. Travelers might also discuss their roaming options with their phone companies beforehand to avoid additional charges.

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