The Tethering Epiphany

This is the BIGGEST epiphany I’ve come across in Jamaica in years!!  I’m sure there will be some of you who already know this and will just roll your eyes but there must be PLENTY of you who don’t know or else someone would have filled me in already considering the amount of times I’ve complained about crappy internet in Jamaica.  I just posted my woes in our Facebook group last week and no one has mentioned this.  So I’m going to tell you the long version of the story to make it more entertaining.

Last week I went to a Digicel store in Ocho Rios to inquire about buying an internet modem for the home I’m renting just outside of Black River in St Elizabeth.  I felt like an idiot when the two clerks looked at each other and laughed.  They straight up told me they do not have internet coverage in the specific area of Middle Quarters so I shouldn’t waste my money.  They suggested I go to the Flow store down the way and inquire there.  You know it’s bad if they send you to their competition lol.

So I walked down to Flow and the only solution they could give me is installing a hard line in the guest house and it would take up to a month to get the installer appointment.  They also said it probably wouldn’t be great internet access even with the hard line in that location.  I had pretty much given up and just drove back down to Black River, defeated.

I just cannot understand how Digicel has zero coverage in an area where my Digicel phone data plan works perfectly!  How can the same company provide lightening fast phone data but no internet coverage?  I don’t understand networks.

The next afternoon I took my laptop over to another guest house that I know has internet.  I was going to sit there all day and work.  Well wouldn’t you know that somebody, obviously MUCH smarter than me asked, “Why don’t you just use your cell phone as a hotspot?”  The answer is simple….I have never done it and don’t know how.  He took my phone, went into the settings and quicker than I could blink he turned on the hotspot tethering in my Samsung Galaxy S5, created a password for the connection and voila…..there I sat, dumbfounded, with lightening fast internet access on my laptop.  DUH.


Samsung hotspot tethering


The true test was going to be when I went home to my place to test it.  So I did just that and what do you know….here I sit using fast internet on my laptop with my cell phone sitting beside me.  I’m uploading videos to Youtube, blogging, building websites, all at the same time, and doing everything I normally do with good internet.

So forget installing internet at the house!  I just used my phone as a hotspot for the entire time I rented there!  It’s a cheap, fast, and SUPER reliable solution to something that should have never been a problem in my life all this time!  Why the hell couldn’t Digicel tell me this?

I still can’t believe I didn’t know this or that nobody ever told me this before.  So let this be a public service announcement to those of you who travel with laptops and can’t find good internet in Jamaica.  Buy a data plan for your phone and just tether it.

NOTE:  Do not attempt to tether your phone without a plan.  Your phone credit will deplete faster than you can blink.  Make sure to have a data plan activated.




  • Kyra says:

    OMG thank you. That was informative. But the question is how much of a data plan would one need?

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  • Kristi says:

    Well this time I purchased a 7 day plan with 1 GB and I never exceeded the limit. It was weird. Seems like the data never drained!! And the 7 day plan was only about $7.00

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