Author Topic: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast  (Read 972 times)

Beth FF

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Sort of a "gear" question so put it here. As I'll be travelling around the British coast later this year I need to make sure I have the best mobile coverage available. I'm currently with Virgin (which piggie backs off of EE) and have been meaning to leave them for ages as I get such a poor signal (in suburban West Mids!) that I can't make calls. Anyway, I've heard Vodafone is the best for coverage, so is this still the case? Been comparing EE and Vodafone on Ofcom's mobile availability checker and Vodafone does look good, although depends on 3G or 4G coverage. Virgin tried to wow me with a good 4G package but I've heard, because they piggieback, they won't be as good as EE. Arrgh! Is there a simple answer because it's starting to feel more complicated than it should :-\ . TIA. 

alan de enfield

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #1 on: 15:42:59, 09/07/18 »
Sort of a "gear" question so put it here. As I'll be travelling around the British coast later this year I need to make sure I have the best mobile coverage available. I'm currently with Virgin (which piggie backs off of EE) and have been meaning to leave them for ages as I get such a poor signal (in suburban West Mids!) that I can't make calls. Anyway, I've heard Vodafone is the best for coverage, so is this still the case? Been comparing EE and Vodafone on Ofcom's mobile availability checker and Vodafone does look good, although depends on 3G or 4G coverage. Virgin tried to wow me with a good 4G package but I've heard, because they piggieback, they won't be as good as EE. Arrgh! Is there a simple answer because it's starting to feel more complicated than it should :-\ . TIA.



Each provider has 'no service' areas and the more rural you go the worse they get - you'll probably find that at the top end of Scotland (when you likely need it most) you won't have a signal.


Have you considered carrying a PLB (personal locator beacon) - These things are amazing - friends and family (that you give a link to) can follow your track which is updated every 10 minutes (or so)


https://www.memory-map.co.uk/spot-gen3-satellite-gps-tracker-messenger?gclid=CjwKCAjwj4zaBRABEiwA0xwsP2hrr3Y1NYTYpb6hwCPHRpqZO_6wqw2N3NgbxC2Tv6LkGHjMhH0ijBoCZ7EQAvD_BwE



Annual Contract :


https://www.findmespot.eu/en/index.php?cid=103


Well worth the money (and the annual fee) for something like your UK Coast walk[/color][/font][/size]



« Last Edit: 15:49:51, 09/07/18 by alan de enfield »

alan de enfield

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #2 on: 15:57:18, 09/07/18 »

This is what the track looks like to those given access.


Us leaving Hull marina (in the boat) heading for Plymouth a couple of weeks ago.


Ooops - not letting me add attachments / pictures.

richardh1905

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #3 on: 16:48:55, 09/07/18 »
Strictly speaking a PLB is for emergency use only, Alan; what you describe sounds more like a satellite messaging system


http://www.mountainsafety.co.uk/EP-PLBs-v-Satellite-Messengers-aspx


In my last job I was issued with a PLB for boat work, but we also took them out to remote locations on foot.

alan de enfield

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #4 on: 17:05:51, 09/07/18 »
Strictly speaking a PLB is for emergency use only, Alan; what you describe sounds more like a satellite messaging system


http://www.mountainsafety.co.uk/EP-PLBs-v-Satellite-Messengers-aspx


In my last job I was issued with a PLB for boat work, but we also took them out to remote locations on foot.




You are correct, we have PLBs (on 121.5Mhz which can be attached to lifejackets and then in event of a MoB we can navigate back and pick them up) and an EPIRB (406Mhz) on the boat.
You are probably aware that 121.5Mhz was the international Guard frequency and all civilian aircraft had to monitor it, a little PLB signal could be picked up by an Airliner travelling at 30,000 feet and relayed back to the emergency services, but it became 'optional' some years ago as the 406 GPS EPIRBS became more common.

The 'SPOT' system is more of a tracker which sends out an email message to friends and family (at pre-agreed times) saying 'all ok' and you can continuously monitor the 'snail-trail' on the map.
It also has a 'panic' button which sends a signal up to the GPS satellites to transmit to the emergency service (so is acting as an EPIRB) and allows them to home into your location.


I was trying to attach some recent pictures of our 'snail-trail' but it appears that I no longer get the options to add attachments.
« Last Edit: 17:11:01, 09/07/18 by alan de enfield »

gunwharfman

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #5 on: 17:21:43, 09/07/18 »
I've always been led to belive that the answer is Vodaphone?

Beth FF

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #6 on: 18:00:47, 09/07/18 »
Hopefully I'll not need to call for help, but I need to know that whichever provider I go with has the most chance of coverage. My phone is more for updating social media, arranging accommodation, and contacting people for meetups. Will look into emergency kit like the PLB too  :)

ninthace

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #7 on: 19:01:35, 09/07/18 »
Hopefully I'll not need to call for help, but I need to know that whichever provider I go with has the most chance of coverage. My phone is more for updating social media, arranging accommodation, and contacting people for meetups. Will look into emergency kit like the PLB too  :)
You can call 999 on any network. If the coverage is weak a text will get through where voice calls  canít but your phone needs to be registered. All folk who walk in wild areas should do this. See http://www.emergencysms.org.uk/registering_your_mobile_phone.php
Solvitur Ambulando

richardh1905

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #8 on: 20:13:28, 09/07/18 »
I've always been led to belive that the answer is Vodaphone?


Vodafone is excellent around the coast of Orkney and Shetland; the only lighthouse that I could not get a signal at was Sule Skerry, 40 miles out in the Atlantic. Edit - and Foula


But I believe no signal at Cape Wrath, and there will be blackspots elsewhere on the N and W coast.
« Last Edit: 11:17:08, 10/07/18 by richardh1905 »

jimbob

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #9 on: 20:31:20, 09/07/18 »
Contact Ofcom as this is exactly the type of question they are paid to answer.
They have an app but that is dependant on typing in town names or post codes. However they do hold all the data so should be able to produce an answer.
Too little, too late, too bad......

nesty

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #10 on: 23:28:49, 09/07/18 »
Just my 2p and I hate to recommend them, as I hate the money grabbing b[censored]*d of a company, is Vodaphone.
I have been with them for a number of years, their signal is very good I find around the UK.


I did a coastal Scotland trip in 2010, I even went a bit inland to the Highlands and I still got a signal fine. Though the previous poster is correct there is no signal at Cape Wrath lighthouse if i remember when there!







richardh1905

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #11 on: 23:53:14, 09/07/18 »
You can call 999 on any network. If the coverage is weak a text will get through where voice calls  canít but your phone needs to be registered. All folk who walk in wild areas should do this. See http://www.emergencysms.org.uk/registering_your_mobile_phone.php


This is a good idea.

nesty

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #12 on: 00:20:49, 10/07/18 »
You can call 999 on any network. If the coverage is weak a text will get through where voice calls  canít but your phone needs to be registered. All folk who walk in wild areas should do this. See http://www.emergencysms.org.uk/registering_your_mobile_phone.php


I did not know this at all, I will certainly do this.

fernman

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #13 on: 09:34:27, 10/07/18 »
You can call 999 on any network. If the coverage is weak a text will get through where voice calls  canít but your phone needs to be registered. All folk who walk in wild areas should do this. See http://www.emergencysms.org.uk/registering_your_mobile_phone.php

Just to clarify, it is your number that you are registering, not the handset.
Once you've done it you will remain registered no matter how many times you change your phone, so long as you keep the same number.

Beth FF

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Re: Best mobile phone coverage around the British coast
« Reply #14 on: 13:17:54, 11/07/18 »
Thanks everyone, it does seem as though Vodafone is the one to go with. Will contact Ofcom, Jim, and ask them as it's a lot easier than scrolling around the country on their website, interesting as it is to compare the providers. And have checked, and seems I've already registered my number on Emergency SMS so that's good.