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How good is HAL Internet for YouTube? Skype?

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I have been reading information here about the HAL Internet packages.

While out to sea, I think that the Premium Internet package is the only package that

can access Skype to make business calls and that can access YouTube. 


Am I correct in assuming that I cannot access Skype and YouTube with the "Surf Package"?

(1 rank lower package than Premium Internet ).


What has been your experience specifically with Skype and YouTube on the Premium Plan?

Was it slow? Difficult to connect? Or work surprisingly well?

And do you happen to know which websites/apps are blocked, even with the Premium Package?


The Premium Internet package comes at a high price, so if I purchase it, I hope that I will get value for my money.  

(FY, I have a mobile wi-fi router/hot spot to use on land.)



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We had the premium package for our Mediterranean/Transatlantic cruise on the Koningsdam in October/November. We bought it so we could Facetime and What's App with our daughter and grand-daughter.  Sometimes it was very slow and kept freezing, other times it was pretty good.   We had days in mid Atlantic where it was almost unusable.  

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HAL internet uses the "regular" satellites that orbit over +/- over the equator and so the farther you are from the equator the more tenuous the signal. 


That said my husband took part in a conference call VOIP from north of France, and he said it was not much different than doing it from state to state. No experience with Skype or streaming. We did have Premium. 


Premium bought pre-sailing is not much more than Surf on board. I have read that if you have Surf and access a Streaming site, they automatically bump you up to Premium at the on-board rate. We just bought the pre-sailing Premium, knowing that my husband would need to use high-bandwidth sites and make that phonecall. Better safe than sorry.

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I had the 7 day premium on a 7 day Caribbean cruise on the Nieuw Statendam.  I used skype and facetime. Most worked ok. Skype was sometimes grainy, but voice was clear. Was overall pleased, except when the internet was down. On my seven day cruise it was out for one day and two mornings for just a couple hours. 

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Thanks for the replies. I feel better and will just go ahead and get the Premium Plan and hope for the best. Calling on Whatsapp and other SMS sites requires that the other party also have that same app. With Skype, I should be able to make calls to land lines just like usual. With lots of sea days,  the streaming option will keep me more entertained.


I noticed on my cruise that all 3 Internet packages can be purchased in advance, but there was no mention about "pre-purchase discount price", so I think the prices might not change. Pre-purchasing sounds like less hassle. I hope the Internet will be ready to connect once I get on-board. 

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32 minutes ago, Funatabi said:

I hope the Internet will be ready to connect once I get on-board. 

Sometimes it takes a while for the passenger base to by uploaded to the internet system, and you can't log on/sign up until that is finished. I have had that happen more than once. 

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When we were on the Prinsendam, I started with the Premium plan.

I had recordings DH was going to watch on sea days and they would only work for 5 minutes and then die.


When I was asking about it, the HAL staff thought I was trying to download You Tube (I wasn’t) and advised me that it will not work on board. Not sure if this is true on other ships or not, but it is what I was told in the Spring of this year.


Fellow passengers used if for Skype, FaceTime, etc and it seemed to work decently.

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