Galley Wench Tales

Exploring the world through the people we meet
and the food they eat.

cruising life cruising destinations cruiser communications bahamas

Phone booth, Thompson Bay Long Island; the
last location our cell-phone based hot spot
worked.  Funny, in the U.S. these phone booth
are antiquated.  Here, they’re still viable.

“Is there cell coverage in the Jumentos or Ragged Islands?” I asked a few telecommunication folks.  “”Yes, it’s getting better all the time.  There’s even a BTC [Bahamas Tele Communications] in Duncantown [Ragged Islands, population 70]).”  After checking near daily for a restock to come in, I paid BTC (aka Batelco) $99 for an Alcatel Droid phone / WiFi hotspot, plus bought 2 $30 2 GB packages for cell-tower-based WiFi access.

I was optimistic.  I was excited.  I was silly.  So what if US cell phone coverage often reached well out into our waterways?  This was the Bahamas.
Wayne was pragmatic.  Wayne was right.  “Make a post that you’ll be out of communication for a week or so.”
I did.  But I have my hot spot, I thought….
Did I mention Wayne was right?
And then?  Hog Cay neighbors Wayne and Sharon of My Sharona tipped me off to the secret of connecting in the Raggeds where there is enough of a signal…. Switching the phone network setting from GS3 to GSM only.  It works!!!! Slowwwwly; but it does work! (Posts may be updated with more photos when access is better.  Check back!)
“Why didn’t tell me in Georgetown when I asked about the Raggeds?” I asked.   “They don’t know in Georgetown,” Sharon explained.  “Buena Vista, Double Breasted and Water Cay all sometimes work.  Don’t forget to reset your phone when you leave the area, though.”  Aha!  Thanks Sharon!
For the curious, here’s the rundown of access

  • Thompson Bay, Long Island:  good thing we used the cell phone hot spot at night; it was out by morning.  — March 21-22, 2014.  Worked the 21st; down the 22nd.
  • Water Cay, Jumentos:  no cell phone service. — March 22-24, 2014.
  • Flamingo Island, Jumentos:  no cell phone service. — March 24-26, 2014.
  • Buena Vista, Ragged Islands:  limited cell phone service. — March 26-28, 2014.
  • Hog Cay (Duncantown area) – March 29 – now… works now that we know….

Location Location
March 30, 2014.  BAHAMAS.  We’re in the remote Ragged Islands off Hog Cay, near Duncantown.  Hog Cay (Lat/Long N22.14.5 W75.45.3).  Here’s our stops since the last post
  • Water Cay n23.01.748 w75.42.996
  • Flamingo Cay n22.53.020 w75.52.154
  • Flamingo Cay n22.53.373 w75.51.944
  • Buena Vista n22.24.811 w75.49.800
  • Buena Vista n22.25.705 w75.50.062
  • Raccoon Cay House Bay n22.21.300 w75.48.846
  • Hog Cay n22.14.5 w75.45.3