ipad worth carrying?

just got an Ipad for Christmas, would it be worth carrying it in daily backpack for a group trip in Mid-March? for directions, information, maps, etc...email? i have seen information about wifi spots. are they pretty easy to find/common? we will be in Rome for two nights and in Montecatini Termi for 8 nights. thanks for the input.

Posted by Ellen
Centennial, CO, USA
1489 posts

Totally! Download a few movies before you leave on holiday so you can watch in your hotel or on a train when bored. Listen to music in your room.. Most hotels offer free wi-fi, you just need to ask at the front desk for the code. Love the keyboard for email. the ipad is perfect for downloading your photos from the camera each night (buy the $29 photo adapter at the Apple store) and then posting your s on Facebook with photos. If you have the phone service, you should turn it off and just use wi-fi, or like your phone you are in for a huge bill when you get home. I've had mine on 2 trips now and I will always bring it with me from here on out!

Posted by RB
Coraopolis, Pa, USA
664 posts

Take the iPad. We have taken my iPad for the last two summer trips to Italy and it works well. Most hotels provide free wi-fi, so connectivity is not a problem. A lot of cafes and other places offer free wi-fi, as well. If your device is 3 or 4g do not use it in Italy or you could come home to a huge surprise when you receive your bill. Wi-fi will be your friend. Buon viaggio,

Posted by Tom
2876 posts

Another thing is that, although it's a bit clumsy to use, an IPad takes great pictures and videos - which you can readily email to others when you're in wifi range. It can take the place of a camera if you want it to.

Posted by David
Florence, AL, USA
2637 posts

IPads and notebooks are great for travel. I last hauled my 17" laptop all over Italy, and it about broke my back in a backpack. They're just too heavy when you have the option of an IPad. You can keep in touch by e-mail through your hotel's WiFi. And it's so nice not to have to talk to anybody on the telephone. That's almost worth the price of the trip alone.

Posted by Melinda
Portland, OR, USA
11 posts

Why is having 3 or 4 g a problem with iPad? Will you charged more?

Posted by Sheron
Alta Loma, CA, USA
1223 posts

I would definitely take it with me on the trip but not in my daily backpack. I personally would leave it in my hotel room (preferably in a safe) during the day. Most hotels offer wifi connectivity but when you're out and about sightseeing, you won't find wifi in cafe's as we do here in Starbucks, etc. Perhaps you have the mini Ipad which is lighter/smaller but mine is the larger Ipad and it's a little too heavy to carry around in my already heavy camera bag. I just can't see carrying it around & really using it during the day. I use mine in the hotel at night to skype back home, send e-mails, watch movies & play games. It's also particularly nice to have it with you on the plane as a source of entertainment.

Posted by Harold
New York, NY, USA
4457 posts

"Why is having 3 or 4 g a problem with iPad? Will you charged more?" Yes, when you use 3G or 4G outside of the US, you are roaming. How much this costs depends on your particular plan, but it's never cheap. There are many stories of people coming back to bills of hundreds or thousands of dollars. You can buy a package that will reduce the cost a bit, but it's still expensive. Or, you can buy a local SIM that will put you on a local data plan, which will be much cheaper. Check your carrier's website for their international roaming rates. If you want to get a local SIM, Prepaid GSM is the best source of information about available companies and plans, and their forums are the best place to ask detailed questions.

Posted by MIke
Terre Haute, IN, USA
30 posts

thank you for the input. i thought it might be a bit heavy to carry while we wander the sites, the email,photos, skype may come in handy. the hotel advertises wifi. thank you again.

Posted by Lola
Seattle, WA
6007 posts

We take ours and it is very useful for email, internet, maps, etc. but we do not carry it around with us during the day. Try Facetime instead of Skype. It is on your iPad and works very well with other Apple devices.

Posted by Laurel
Rome, Italy
3015 posts

We use ours for Rick Steves' guidebooks but have an Android tablet so have the Kindle app. If you can put your guidebooks on it, you'll not have to bring the books. That alone makes the tablet worth carrying!

Posted by Lee
1017 posts

Data is cheap in italy, so you might want to look into a prepaid sim for times when wifi isn't available. All ipads are unlocked. Check the Rome TA forum for the latest information.

Posted by Stephen
Fort Mill, SC, USA
263 posts

I took mine to Italy recently and used it a lot. Download the Kindle app and buy the electronic versions of the guidebooks that you need. Like others have said, you won't need to carry the bulky books!

Posted by Brian
10 posts

Mike, TrenItalia also has a free iPad app where you can look up all the train times and it uses google maps. Its great and we plan on using it when we go to Italy in April. Search for "ProntoTreno" in the app store.