How We Stay Connected at Our Favorite Harvest Hosts Locations

Harvest Hosts is one of our favorite sources for finding unique and beautiful overnight stays. We’ve had the pleasure of staying at so many interesting and fun locations for over a decade, and we know we have many more Harvest Host adventures in our future.

We have to be connected when we travel – after all, our job is running the Mobile Internet Resource Center (www.rvmobileinternet.com), which provides educational resources on exactly how to do that. 

Harvest Hosts aren’t traditional campgrounds, and guests are expected to be self contained – including their internet access. 

So how do we make sure we’re still able to get work done (before we partake in a wine tasting), stream Netflix or plan our next stop? 

 

Using a Host’s Wi-Fi Network

Some Harvest Hosts may have a guest Wi-Fi signal network that you can join – perhaps in their tasting room or gift shop. 

They may be happy to give you the password and permission to use the network, but be prepared that the signal may only be reachable near or in their building – not where they may ask you to park. Having some Wi-Fi extending gear on board might be able to help in such scenarios. 

Also be prepared that some hosts may even turn off their Wi-Fi network at the end of the business day. 

All and all, we don’t recommend counting on using a host’s Wi-Fi for your internet needs. It may not be something that you can access after the business closes for the day, or when you are back in your RV. Even if they offer it. 

But sometimes if there are no other options available – such as no cellular signal, it can be a blessing to get online via their Wi-Fi network. 

Thistle Meadow Winery – Laurell, NC

At one such host off the Blue Ridge Parkway – Thistle Meadow Winery – using our external Wi-Fi antenna connected to our mobile internet router was the only way we were able to get online in the evening. 

For more information on using Wi-Fi as an internet source:

Using Wi-Fi as a Mobile Internet Source

 

Using Cellular Data 

Many Harvest Hosts have ample cellular signal from the major carriers. And using a cellular signal is the connection option we most often utilize in our travels in general. 

Fenn Valley Winery – Fennville, MI

There are three components to getting a solid cellular internet connect:

  • Gear – this could include hotspotting off your smartphone, using a cellular embedded tablet, a mobile hotspot device or a cellular embedded router. 
  • Data plans – you’ll need to purchase a data plan from your cellular carriers for the devices you want to use in your setup. There are a lot of options out there. 
  • Signal Enhancing – when you’re further from the cellular towers, as some host locations can be, you might need some help to get a better signal. This can include external antennas and cellular boosters. 

To learn more about this sometimes complex topic, start with our collection of resources at – we cover all of the options out there: 

Using Cellular Data for Mobile Internet

 

Satellite Internet – Starlink!

If the location does not have a usable cellular or Wi-Fi, Starlink may be an option. 

In order for it to be useful, you’ll need a clear view of the open sky. If you’re in a heavily wooded area, you might have difficulty getting a reliable signal. 

Starlink does have some limitations – the setup can be pricey, it uses a lot of power that may not be ideal when you’re staying without hook-ups, and it might require some setup to deploy. 

But Starlink can be a game-changer in locations with no other options. 

Marie’s Lavendar Farm – Robbinsville, NC

At a recent stay at the beautiful Marie’s Lavender Farm in North Carolina – there was absolutely no cellular signal on any carrier to be found. So we deployed our Starlink setup on a tall pole to try to get around the trees and terrain that were blocking signal. Despite several drop-outs, we were able to get online just enough to book our next night’s stay.

From our app Coverage? – showing Marie’s Lavender Farm with absolutely NO cellular signal. 

For more information on Starlink: 

Starlink for RV & Boat Mobile Internet Resources

 

Other Tips for Internet at Harvest Hosts Locations

Since you’re likely only going to be at your Harvest Host location for one night, a simple easy-to-deploy or always-on solution is best. You don’t want to spend your time fiddling with lots of different gear or deploying solutions that require extensive setup. 

If you have a Harvest Host All Access membership, you can view a cellular coverage map overlay in the Harvest Host app. Reading past reviews from other Harvest Host members can also give you some insight as to what your options will be. 

And of course signal-reporting apps, like our very own Coverage? (iOS and Android), can help you know in advance what to expect for the cellular carriers you travel with. 

For more information: Coverage? App

 

We Love Harvest Hosts!

All in all we have really loved our Harvest Host membership and the experiences we’ve had visiting their locations. And being able to stay connected while we’re sipping on our wine or enjoying fresh fruit from a farm makes it even more enjoyable! 

We offer a ton of free resources to the public over at the Mobile Internet Resource Center that we invite you to explore. And we’re honored to offer Havest Hosts and Boondockers Welcome members a discount for joining our premium membership if you want to dive deeper into our content, interactive guidance, discounts and alerts. 

About the Authors:

Cherie Ve Ard has traveled full time by RV and boat with her partner Chris Dunphy since 2006 – working remotely the entire time. They’ve been Harvest Hosts members since its inception, and love stopping for an evening sampling a new vineyard. They share their personal travel adventures at Technomadia.com, and host RVMobileInternet.com to help their community keep connected.  

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