Boredom: if you step onto a container ship as a guest without at least a month of "work" to do, you're to blame. I admit, I'm uncertain of bandwidth and such; but there is some. Download sources before boarding! And I ain't much of a writer, but I might take a whack at writing the Great American [short story] during the journey so that I wasn't bored. Point is: riding a largely automated ship for 2-14 days without a plan is nearly the definition of boredom; plan against boredom!
Having taught myself Ruby on Rails while cruising in Alaska 8 years ago, learning without the internet can be pretty blissful. Just make sure you download the sources first! [Yes, Ruby doesn't need that. I'm looking to learn Rust...]
EDIT: I have no affiliate relationship, but this (http://www.freightercruises.com/) seems pretty solid (e.g. http://www.freightercruises.com/seaworthy_news_1310.php).
Stackdump is simply amazing.
Yup. According to http://www.groundcontrol.com/IsatHub.htm and http://www.groundcontrol.com/BGAN_rate_plans.htm 50mb will cost you around $400. (Just a quick search but when I researched this a little more in depth a few years ago prices weren't too different from that). + the modem which is ~$2000 IIRC.
Of course this is if you would buy the data for yourself. Though quiet a few ships have sat internet installed. The data rates are usually pretty low so it's good enough for email but not for surfing bloated websites like Stackoverflow or Google.
And then there's the alternative of 3G/4G GSM when you're near the shore.
This is starting to change, with some now offering unlimited connectivity for ~$15-30/day.
It was cool to interact with the crew but also strange and somewhat depressing as the life of a sailor is really not that great. The average crewman is from a very poor country and they are at sea for most of the year to support families back home that they only get to see for a few months.
Sockets could be stacked to create medium density housing. You could relocate your house to any city on earth with the right socket.
EDIT: More like ~546 containers per year from an industry survey, out of 120 million moved in a year. Not quite as good as commercial air flight, but not as bad I was thinking.
Your container may be safer than your house, and the financial solutions is the same: insure it.
Here are some good examples:
I don't want to discourage anyone from traveling on container ships. It sounds like fun to me. Please be aware that some cruiseship travel can cost less (much less?) than $120 a day, and they make your bed everyday amongst many other amenities.
But that said, 120/day is not cheap. As a hacker getaway, you can book a hut by a fjord in Norway for far less than that...
US$37 / day at current exchange rates and including taxes and semi-obligatory gratuities:
US$39 / day:
Heads-up: English is not the primary language of most passengers, but from what I've read, the crew can accommodate it.
Norwegian also has some that are under $100/day including taxes and gratuities. The one below is $968.95 for 13 days ($75/day), assuming you take the promo where the cruise line pays for the gratuities.
(click all the way through to the final pricing page - the first page isn't what you get charged)
This form of travel- on container ships- will show you a side of the world, the shipping industry, the people who work in it, working ports, etc that you'll never see on a cruise ship. The accommodations and value is probably not competitive with a cruise ship, but the experience is not going to be similar at all.
We spent 2 years in Chile, starting with Startup Chile-- but it really got good when we started making friends with locals.
Tourism is a totally different experience from travel!
I made a video about my cargo ship experience here:
A few quick points:
1. Yes, it is very expensive to travel by cargo ship. It cost me about $4,500 total. I'm glad I did it as it was a cool experience, but given the cost I'd be hesitant to do it again.
2. Why is it so expensive? Best I can tell, because the cargo ship companies don't care. Taking passengers isn't their primary business. They're transporting multi-million dollar cargoes, so they probably figure that if they're going to take the odd passenger, they might as well charge a high price to make it worth their while.
3. For anyone interested in how to go about booking a trip on a cargo ship, I explain how I did it and provide a few links here: www.ndoherty.com/cargo-ship-2/
4. Perhaps the craziest thing for me was the lack of security on the ship. My bags were never checked at the port in Japan and the captain told me the door code for the bridge within an hour of boarding the vessel. The bag check when I got off the ship in Peru was also half-assed at best.
5. There was very limited internet access aboard the ship. We could just send and receive email once or twice per day. That was it. I brought a lot of books with me on the ship and did a lot of writing, so I didn't get bored, but I imagine most people would. I think a few days is plenty of time to spend on such a ship unless you have a plan to make use of all the down-time.
Or one of those Caribbean leisure cruises? Those are cheap upfront - to get you in the door - relying on in-ship purchases (like alcohol & restaurants) to make the majority of their money.
Recently I did two weeks of camping in Glacier National Park MT. It was solitude and bliss, no cell service, no Internet, as primitive as I could handle.
Cool little blog link:
Dont expect any comfort there but it's cheap and a fun.
And I'd bet good money there is far less risk of norovirus on an freighter than on the floating retirement communities that are modern cruising.
It's not a complete free for all once in international waters. The law of the flag the ship sails under (i.e. the jurisdiction where it is registered) applies. However, in practise many ships fly a flag of convenience, e.g. Liberia. The minimum wage in Liberia for unskilled labour is $4/day(!)