Subject: Re: Laptop in Australia/New Zealand?
Hello Ruth and Ziners,

We are here in Australia now and yes we brought our laptop. But we are here for 6 months, 3 of which we are spending in a rented house so have signed up for a local Internet service. For E-mail on a short trip, we wouldn't bother bringing the laptop as you can access your email at just about any computer store or library; Internet cafes are less common out of the large cities. With the laptop you have the problem of how to connect to the Internet, best way would be to have a local phone number for dial up; you pay for the service monthly. Wireless service is not that common and rarely free. Hotels motels etc. if they provide a wireless service, make a hefty charge compared with an Internet cafe, computer store or library.

We bought a small Flash Trax device to store our digital images for our South East Asia trip last year; it has a viewing screen but is too small to be of much use for editing purposes. There is no doubt that it is nice to be able to download your images and view them on a relatively large screen and delete the ones you don't want as you go. Without the laptop or the expense of buying more equipment you can find somewhere to download images to disc without too much trouble, but wouldn't be able to view them.

Without a local service number to connect to via telephone we found using our laptop for email here frustrating when travelling around, we never seemed to be able to connect at airports and the hotels and motels weren't always equipped for wireless. If you don't mind the extra item of luggage to tote or the weight, I would bring the computer to download, view and possible manipulate images as you travelled, use wireless when available but be prepared to have to find a computer store or library sometimes if you need to check your Email on a daily basis.

Hope this helps you decide what to do. I guess you might get a different opinion from everyone you ask.

When are you going to be in Australia and where are you going once you get here?

Regards Sue Waterloo ON (currently in Castlemaine Victoria)