Staying permanently connected on your next road trip is now just a click away with Hertz’s continued expansion of their mobile Wi-Fi units.
Less than a year after becoming the first car rental company in Australia to offer the device, Hertz announced in August that a further 24 car rental outlets in Germany, 14 locations in Spain and 17 stores in Italy would offer the Wi-Fi hotspot. This development builds on the success of the company's mobile Wi-Fi program in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the Canary Islands.
"Hertz Mobile Wi-Fi allows our customers to connect to the internet anytime, anywhere. It’s possible to connect up to five different devices at any one time, which is really popular for large groups and families – especially during long journeys. The connectivity is nationwide too and connects to the 3G network, so customers can search for information about the destinations they are travelling to," said Chris Rusden, Regional Vice President for Hertz Australia and New Zealand.
"With a daily data allowance of 150 megabytes in Australia, renters have a lot of bandwidth to surf the web and write emails – and it means they don’t have to worry about large data roaming costs or finding various Wi-Fi hotspots to connect to throughout their journey."
The pocket-sized portable service gives travellers access to a fast – up to 21 Mbps internationally and 7.2 Mbps in Australia and New Zealand - internet connection on as many as five or eight devices (depending on the destination) including laptops, tablets, smart phones simultaneously.
For a fraction of the cost of mobile roaming or hotel internet charges, customers receive an unlimited data allowance in France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland. In Spain there’s a three gigabyte limit and in Australia there’s a 150 megabyte limit.
The unit, which generally last for around five hours, comes with a USB cable for easy recharging. It can be rented on its own or bundled with Hertz's Neverlost unit, a popular in-car navigation system that uses GPS tracking combined with smart sensors to achieve the accuracy needed for true turn-by-turn guidance.
These handheld portable Wi-Fi rental units, which are known as MiFis in some countries, are not only restricted to Hertz. On the market today are several companies offering mobile hotspots that can be rented for the duration of a holiday for use in many popular destinations around the world.
By ordering in advance, these devices can be collected at the airport or priority mailed before departure. Some devices offer unlimited downloads but a 'fair use policy' is encouraged. If you’re travelling, it’s probably a good idea to spend your time seeing the sights or relaxing by the pool rather than being glued to youtube for the entire getaway.
However you're sure to make all your friends jealous as you casually upload photos of your trip to facebook - all courtesy of a portable mobile hotspot.
Hertz will continue to monitor the uptake of the unit, which is available from many airport and downtown locations, to decide whether they should expand the service further.
"There are currently no plans to roll out the service to other regions; however as with all our services we will continue to review our customers’ requirements and if there is demand for Mobile Wi-Fi units in other areas we will reassess this," said Chris.