Need to boost the wifi signal on your motorhome, RV or camper? Considering installing a wifi antenna on your roof? Here's what we did- and how it worked!
Internet. It makes the world go round. Or, at least it does for us.
We've always needed internet in our motorhome and have managed well for a few years, but there have been times, especially in Europe, where we've struggled. The wifi signal was weak and our tiny dongle just wasn't powerful enough to give it any ‘oomph' (technical term).
This has been a problem, as both of us NEED the internet in order to make our travelling life work. Without that, Mr WB can't work and I can't write motorhome blog posts and generally update this website.
So, when a UK company called Wifi on Board offered us a motorhome wifi kit, we jumped at the chance to try it out.
DISCLAIMER: We received a free router and roof mount antenna from Wifi on Board, in return for an honest review. We agreed to trial their kit and said we would ONLY review it if we felt it was good enough. As with all our reviews, if we wouldn't recommend it to our family, we won't recommend it to you.
WHY IS INTERNET TOUGH IN A MOTORHOME, CAMPER, RV, CARAVAN OR BOAT?
Sadly, in most campsites or marinas across the UK & Europe, even if they offer wifi, it's on a massively restricted level. You can open a webpage easily enough, but trying to watch live TV, or download a film on Netflix or upload a video (like I do for my Youtube channel) is often impossible.
So, to combat that, you need your own internet. Which means you need a router or something with a SIM card, which picks up 3G/4G/5G signals and allows you to connect your devices to it (such as a laptop or iPad.)
Before motorhome life, we lived on boats for 15+ years. We are used to slow, dysfunctional internet. We've only ever experienced the joy of Fibre Broadband at friend's houses or in expensive hotels.
We have tried MANY ways to boost and improve our internet. Seriously, many. And every single one was… underwhelming. Don't get me wrong, some wifi boosters helped, but there was always some drawback, like power usage, size, or technical requirements.
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WHAT IS A WIFI BOOSTER?
A wifi booster is just that- something which boosts an internet signal.
One common misconception for people (ie- me!) is that you MUST buy a dedicated wifi booster to get decent internet. But, actually, you don't need more than a good router (the thing your SIM card goes in) and an antenna, preferably mounted as high as possible. THAT system can boost your motorhome internet incredibly all on its own!
WHY FIT A MOTORHOME WIFI BOOSTER?
As with most things on a motorhome, you need to consider whether the weight/ space required by the kit you're adding is worth it.
Luckily, a motorhome router and roof antenna doesn't weigh much and doesn't take up much space (see video below for installing)
So, for us, the prospect of faster and more reliable internet was worth it.
Don't forget, neither a booster nor a router can magic a signal out of thin air- there has to be a signal coming from somewhere in order for you to get internet.
MOTORHOME WIFI ON BOARD KIT
Wifi on board do several kits, for yachts, canal barges and motorhomes/ caravans. We got the 4G router with the high gain MiMo roof mount antenna that we attached to the motorhome roof.
This kit allows a SIM from any network to be added, so we used the SIM we already had in our old dongle, which was EE and has so far worked very well around the UK & Europe.
INSTALLING THE KIT ON A MOTORHOME
Installing the Wifi on Board kit was very easy. Watch the video for a step-by-step guide:
WAS IT WORTH IT?
We've been really pleased with the improvement to our motorhome wifi since we installed the Wifi on Board kit. In all the years we've tried different options, we've never found an antenna which worked so well to boost and improve the wifi signal. If we still lived on the boat, we'd definitely fit one of them on there too.
For us, the best sign after any product review is whether we still continue to use the kit after the review is over. We've done this with both the Lifesaver Jerrycan and the Silwy Magnetic glasses. And yes, we will definitely continue to boost our internet on the road with this motorhome wifi router and roof-top antenna too!
Huge thanks to Wifi on Board for the chance to review their kit.
Want more tips for motorhome life?
Here are some more ideas you might find useful:
- Essential Motorhome accessories every van should have
- Best Sat-nav for motorhomes or campervans
- Motorhome Security– tips for at home and on the road
- How to get Internet in a motorhome
- Europe- essential gear for travelling to Europe
- Best gift ideas for motorhome and campervan owners
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