Netbook in Bolivia
Replies: 12 - Last Post: Sep 25, 2012 7:01 PM Last Post By: ban_janti_return
Sep 21, 2012 8:04 PM
Netbook in BoliviaI have an Acer AO756 netbook that I was thinking of bringing to Bolivia. I'll have to admit that I'm somewhat technologically challenged. While looking for info on surge protectors I stumbled across this thread.
Now I'm even more confused. Does this mean I would need to have a voltage regulator too?
I was already confused about surge protectors. I was going to get a Targus mini mobile surge protector until I saw that I would need another outlet for that and sometimes outlets are hard to come by in cheap hotels. Anyone have any recommendations for a mini surge protector that would work with an Acer netbook?
If the whole thing is too complicated perhaps I'd be better off just to leave it at home. I just got it and would hate to fry the mother board. Unfortunately I've already bought a couple of Kindle books for the trip.
Thanks for you advice!
Sep 21, 2012 11:24 PM
1If you're using 220 volts, you need a 220 volt surge protector. Plugging a 110 volt surge protector into a 220 volt outlet will fry the surge protector in the process of doing what it's supposed to do, i.e., protect whatever is downstream from what it thinks is excessive voltage.
You could just do what I do, which is bring a cheap netbook and forget about the surge protector. Virtually any modern electronic product will charge on 110 or 220 volts equally well. Surges may be common, but my netbooks have survived months on end in every country in Latin America, bar none--no fried motherboards yet.
Doing it this way, a wise person would back stuff up frequently to a device which is never plugged in to the computer with the power cord attached--last trip I used a cloud backup (Carbonite), but I've also used card, dvd burns, jump drives and more.
Of course, surges to happen and burn out computers. I know someone in West Africa who's had it happen twice, while I've stayed in the same house for extended periods and not had a problem. Then again, she doesn't keep backups, while I definitely do.
I always carry a little multiple outlet cube or short extension cord with three female plugs on it. I've usually got cameras to charge in addition to the netbook, and I might need a lamp to read by at the same time. Throw in a plug adapter or two and you're all set.
Hope that's helpful.
Sep 22, 2012 10:12 AM
Sep 22, 2012 12:34 PM
3I am in Copacabana Bolivia at present using an Acer Aspire One which I have used without a surge protector for 7 months in SE Asia and 6 weeks in S America. Back up anything worth saving and enjoy not having insurance.
Sep 23, 2012 11:30 AM
Sep 23, 2012 1:44 PM
Sep 24, 2012 10:23 AM
6My laptop (Acer Aspire 5630) has been both at 3600 meters in La Paz and below sea level in The Netherlands over the last 4 years or so, functioning perfectly fine without surge protector. Hard drive is perfectly healthy still too, but I have read this can be an issue with some drives. On the whole though, I think OP is worrying too much.
Then again, I do have trouble connecting with people that are here just for a holiday and have such an urgent need to be online 24/7 to tell their friends on facebook that "they're in Bolivia and it's great" that they need to drag along netbooks, laptops and wifi-enabled smartphones and can only stay in wifi-enabled hotels and eat in wifi-enabled restaurants, thus unable to spend more than the odd minute amongst real Bolivians in real Bolivian spots, without wifi or access to their facebook messages.
So my question to you people in the know is: is there some sort of filter or router that I can buy here in La Paz that would enable me to communicate sensibly with that kind of tourist?
I've tried la Eloy Salmon already, but without success and la calle Santa Cruz only sells extra-wide basines which enable Bolivian men to piss inside them instead of all over my bathroom floor and walls.
Edited by: Peter_1972
Sep 24, 2012 11:42 AM
7My hard drive isn't holding up too well. My techy flatmate reckons its the altitude. Altitude seems to be a good excuse for everything around here.
Obviously the best way to communicate with said tourist would be through the internet itself. Wild Rover and Loki both have facebook pages. You could compare stories with other brave and adventurous travelers about doing the Death Road straight after a big night out at route 36. Or tag pictures of yourself looking comparatively small next to childrens toys in the Salar de Uyuni. Don't forget to wear your Alpaca jumper, beany, gloves, and pants to let the folks back home know how in touch you are with the indigenous people of Bolivia.
Sep 24, 2012 5:33 PM
8For the record I am not on Facebook nor do I have any desire to be. I read of a poster who consulted Wikitravel instead of carrying a guidebook and I thought that was a good idea. I also have a couple of aging siblings that are not in the best of health and I need to be reachable for them in case of emergencies. I've also bought some kindle books and my netbook will take up much less space than the several pounds off books that I have carried with me in the past on an extended trip. I'd rather choose my own reading material than be at the mercy of what may be available.
Sep 25, 2012 9:10 AM
Just in case that explanation was directed at me, don't take it all so seriously please. My reply #5 wasn't directed at you personally - I don't even know you, so how could I judge you. It was directed, in jest , at a certain type of traveler in general that I notice a lot in La Paz, where I live, who seems to be more involved with his notebook than with his or her surroundings. Of course they'll 'do the Death Road', inbetween visits to Ruta 36 from the party hostel where they're staying, before moving on to Uyuni, like hazzdawg says. Which of course is all a big stereotype and something of a hobbyhorse of mine.
And second, you don't owe me any sort of explanation, me being just another simpleton living in and trying to make a living in a country that's on strike on a fulltime basis, only ever interrupting it for holidays and festivities. Your explanation does sound logical though :)
Sep 25, 2012 1:35 PM
I also was not directing my post towards you but rather the stereotype that Peter mentions. Apologies if it was interpreted otherwise. You do not to defend traveling with a netbook, I do myself and find them very useful. BTW you can get almost all guidebooks in PDF format these days as well.
Have a good trip in Bolivia, I'm sure you'll love it.
Sep 25, 2012 6:05 PM
Sep 25, 2012 7:01 PM
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