A couple years ago my son and I figured out that we could play Minecraft multiplayer if we both just connected to the Carnival ship's WiFi without signing up for any Internet service plan. We just connected to the WiFi to get menus and events in the Carnival Hub app. We found this out Minecraft would link up players when a jerk joined an open world that I son had created and started typing rude messages to him. However, this gave me a great idea. If Minecraft could connect players via the ship's free WiFi allowing them to play together and text chat, couldn't a dedicated text app work?
I looked around and found these: https://mashtips.com/android-offline-messaging-apps/. I struggled to setup FireChat on our phones, but Bridgefy looks promising. Check out this video: https://youtu.be/SVJsL4uqC3Q. The part about WiFi without out Internet access is exactly what I was thinking.
Does anyone have any experience with any of these apps and particularly with using them WITHOUT paying for Internet?
P.S. I am aware that Carnival has a $5 per person chat plan, but I have also experienced issues with the service. Since the ship's WiFi service is always working, I expect a WiFi messaging app which is not Internet dependent (Like Minecraft) would be a great solution for inner-ship communications. Of course, it would only work with the ship's WiFi isn't blocking those ports.