Have Laptop Will Travel
-- by Francis Ardi
Leave prepared when traveling with your notebook computer.
Internet connectivity at your destination is one thing to think about
when taking your portable office with you on your next trip.
You might want to consider some of the following options:
Make sure you have a dial-up access account. Dial-up offers the advantage
of portability. You can connect using any telephone jack. DSL and cable
connection providers provide dial-up access for use when away from home.
Check with your Internet Service Provider.
Find out which hotels offer internet connectivity. Most deluxe and
extended stay hotel chains offer high-speed internet connections or
have a special telephone with a jack for a line to connect with your
computer's modem for dial-up. Some hotels even have a business center
with fax and printer access.
Make a list of dial-up access numbers for your travel destinations.
Check your ISP for access numbers at cities and towns served.
It is best to make a spreadsheet to save on your laptop to use when you
get there and for future reference. If your ISP serves only your local area,
you might want to get a new ISP if you plan to travel frequently.
Know how to set up an internet connection using the internet connection wizard.
To change your access number for the duration of an extended stay, go to your
browser menu bar and select Tools, then Internet Options - Connections - Settings
- Properties. Change the area code and the number. Know if you need to dial
the area code and the number and include the area code in the Telephone Number field.
Find out if you need to prefix a 9 to the number in the hotel you will be staying
to access an outside line.
Wireless connectivity. A cell phone which can be connected to your computer or
a slot card which is in itself a wireless dial-in device are useful where it is
uncertain whether there exist land lines or you need internet access while on the road.
Bundle neatly all your cords and cables and pack your carrying case for easy inspection
of your portable office by airport security personnel at the checkpoint.
Keep track of battery usage. Consider a spare battery, especially on long flights.
A portable, external USB Zip drive is avaliable for notebooks if you use Zip disks
for backup and transfer. These are compact and need no separate power source.
Kinko's Copies offers services to notebook users such as printing from your laptop,
dial-up and high speed internet connections and are located in most larger cities.
If your cumputer at the office runs 24-7 and has an "always on" internet connection
you might want to subscribe to Go To My PC service so that you can access your home
office computer with your laptop when you are out of town
About the author:
Francis Ardi is the developer of travelclickmap.com,
an, interactive web page map application for
point and click flight reservations across North America,
including Alaska, Canada, Hawaii and the Caribbean.