One major factor in deciding which service is right for you hinges on where you will be voyaging. Here are some common itineraries for voyagers:
- Youï¿½ll spend six weeks sailing from Miami to the Panama Canal, then cruise the South Pacific Islands for two years before arriving in Australia. In this case, an Iridium phone will provide better coverage. With Globalstar youï¿½d be roaming by the time you arrived in Central America and lose coverage within 10 days of departing the Canal region in the Pacific. You would not have coverage again until close to Australia or New Zealand.
- Youï¿½ll sail in different parts of the North Atlantic for the foreseeable future, including Bahamas, Bermuda, Europe and the Eastern Caribbean. If you can live with no service for a week when eastbound in the Atlantic and two weeks between the Canaries and Caribbean on the return, go with Globalstar. If you donï¿½t want the lapse in coverage, buy a Globalstar phone, and rent an Iridium phone (providing coverage all the way across and redundancy) for each crossing.
- Youï¿½ll sail the Caribbean Basin, spending significant time in the Globalstar roaming areas of Venezuela to Mexico. If you use the phone overwhelmingly for voice, Iridium is probably the right choice. If you do a significant amount of data and want to minimize your bills, choose Globalstar.