There are lots of reasons RVers need internet in their travel trailer: some work from the road, some are roadschooling, and some just want to stream the latest season of Yellowstone in Yellowstone.


If you are new to RV internet, you might have a lot of questions. We’ve pulled together some of the most common questions we get about RV internet set up, so you can hit the road with all the online access you need.

What are my options?


If you want internet in your RV, you have a couple choices: use a signal from cellular data or from a WiFi network. It all depends on what your internet usage is like.


For example, if you use the internet minimally (just to check email or Facebook), you can easily get by with mobile hotspots and/or campground WiFi.


For those that learn, stream, or work online, you need at least 100GB of data and speeds that campground WiFi is unlikely to provide, which means you will require an unlimited data plan.

What gear do I need?


The gear you will need to purchase depends on where you plan to camp your RV. If you are only planning on camping at RV parks and campgrounds, you can make the most of the campground WiFi by buying and installing a WiFi extender. These function by rebroadcasting the public WiFi signal inside your RV. Without an extender, the campground WiFi signal is likely to weaken to the point it is unusable (especially if you are on the outskirts of the site). Note that this is just an extender, and it requires a nearby WiFi signal to work. This will not work if you are boondocking.


If you plan on boondocking, you will most certainly need to rely on unlimited cellular data with at least two bars of service. To take advantage of cellular data, you can get one or both of these tools: a hotspot and/or a booster. A hotspot (which you can buy from T-Mobile, Verizon, AT&T, or Netgear) costs approximately $100.00 USD. This will simply provide you a cellular data signal, however, if you are somewhere particularly remote, you may need to increase that signal (and therefore internet speeds) with a booster. These range widely in cost, from $30.00 to $500.00 USD.


It’s true that you can turn your cell phone into a mobile hotspot using something called “tethering,” but this is often slower than a designated hotspot device, which is not ideal when you plan on streaming the latest episode of your RV life podcast, “RV Having Fun Yet?”.


Also, the reason you’ll need unlimited data is because even if you bought 100GB of data, providers slow down your speeds when you get closer to this limit. This practice is known as “throttling.” So, to prevent throttling, it is highly recommended that you just go for the unlimited data option.

How can I assess the internet situation at camp?


There are several things you should do before and when you get to camp to assess the internet situation. The first thing you should do before you reserve your campsite is look up the site on This website shows campsite listings and ratings, which make sure to mention any amenities they have (like public WiFi) as well as the quality of the cell service in the area. Alternatively, there is a useful app called Coverage? that you can download to your phone. The app shows cell service coverage maps all across the country for AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, or US Cellular without having to look at each provider’s coverage maps separately. Best of all, the maps are stored locally so you can view them offline when you don’t have service at all.


Next, to test the effectiveness of your setup when you get to camp, you’ll want to Google the search terms “speed test” and click the “Run Speed Test” button that Google produces. What you are looking for is speeds of 5 mbps (megabits per second) or more for things like video conferencing or streaming. You can get by on less for email and social media, but remote workers and learners will definitely want as much as possible.

What is the best RV internet setup?


So, now that you’ve taken in this information, what do you do with it? Well, quite frankly, there is no “one size fits all” RV internet setup. Everyone’s needs are different. That said, we would recommend using all or a combination of the options listed above: unlimited cellular data, unlimited data on a hotspot device, a booster, and an extender.


Buying all of these RV internet options can be pricey, but if you do invest in all of them, you will get coverage most of the time. (Notice that we said most of the time. There is no option at all that can guarantee 100% coverage 100% of the time.) All you can do is prepare for whatever the road has to throw at you.


We hope this information helps you install the best RV internet setup for your unique camping style!