How long do you stay offline while traveling?


Anil at foXnoMad asks, “How long do you stay offline while traveling?” Barring unavoidable impairments like poor connectivity or a cost-prohibitive international journey, would you still go online? How often? Anil got a few interesting responses, from…

“Afraid to say we’re the people who lug the laptop, tablet, phone everywhere with us. Quite sad really, I guess, as a chunk of our time in Rome was spent hunting for wireless connections…”


“I’m really saddened by all of these responses. It seems like most people can’t go more than a few hours without checking in online. I take pretty much every weekend off – so that’s two days out of every seven – and I have no problem unplugging for a week if given the opportunity.”

I hate to take the cop-out answer and say “it depends,” but…it depends. If I’m traveling for work, I’m still at work, so I’m online as often as I am while at home. If I’m away entirely for vacation or fun, I’ll look at email daily, Twitter once or twice and that’s it.

How about you? How long do you stay online while traveling?

Randolph West says on App Dot Net: “I went on a cruise last year. We were offline for a week and it was bliss. Sought out a Wi-Fi station on land on day five for an emergency, but it felt good aside from that.”


  1. It does indeed depend. For holidays where I’m likely to need some degree of internet access, such as in foreign countries that I don’t know the language well enough to get around, I tend to scope out wi-fi beforehand and work out my likely level of required preparation.

    However, at least once a year I make a point of going somewhere and disconnecting as much as possible. For me, that’s next week, on a canal boat in the north of England. I’ll be keeping my phone switched on but avoiding as much of my normal online activity (Twitter, RSS, email etc.) as possible.

  2. Depends.
    Camping? Zero. And I don’t miss it. I don’t even have a cell phone.
    Other travel? Depends. If there’s downtime, sure! If it’s a busy sort of trip, meh.

  3. I agree here. Friends of ours have a house up in Maine. To say it’s in the middle of nowhere would be an understatement. It might as well be on the moon. There’s no Internet, cell connection or even TV. I went batty on the first day but by the end of the second I was loving it. After a week I didn’t want to go home. Amazing how we benefit from an “information detox” like that.

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