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When using one of our impressive InReach SE units from DeLorme/Garmin, you'll be transmitting data to and/or from others via a satellite network. There is a charge for that data usage, in usage blocks of 1000 bytes. It's the way our subscription plans are set up on the units we rent, so this just passes that cost along based on your actual usage.
There can be wide variances in data transmission from user to user, but here are some typical data byte counts for the most common usages:
Send a preset message - 13 bytes
Send or receive a custom message - 80 bytes
Check for incoming messages - 13 bytes
Each tracking signal - 13 bytes
Example - Let's assume you're out on a weekend trip for 3 days and two nights. You could send three preset messages you've added to your profile (such as "I'm OK; wish you were here") each day; plus send one custom text message and receive one reply each day; and then you check for incoming messages twice a day. That's a fairly common routine, and you would likely use less than a single bundle of bytes for your entire trip. But you need to run the math for your needs - if you're really "talkative" with folks back home; you send custom messages to multiple people; or you're out for a longer period, you'll probably need more. Fair warning - most renters use a lot more data than they planned. Guys get out in wilderness; in camp by 4pm; just sitting around; then think "hey, I know, I'll text my buddy and see what's happening at home!" It's fun and addictive, so be careful or you'll end up using twice as much as you planned. Nothing will run out on you if you don't buy enough in advance; we'll back-bill it after the fact if you're over your allotment, but it's more expensive - $10 a bundle if back-billed instead of just the $5 when bought ahead of time. If there is any back-billing, we'll send you a list of each message placed while in your possession.
Some tips on minimizing data usage - use as many preset messages as you can instead of custom texts from the field; tell friends and family to keep replies back to you short and sweet; and don't needlessly send messages to multiple recipients. Turn off the tracking feature and automatic message checking. If you'll be doing mostly just a lot of tracking messages in a US location, you're probably better off renting the SPOT. See details for DeLorme/Garmin InReach SE, or call us at 480-348-8917.