As the world looks at ways to grapple with the ongoing coronavirus, connectivity in times like these remains crucial. Be it for travelers or employees stranded at destinations with limited access to WIFI or just areas with limited public access to the internet, Rent ‘n Connect is working hard to ensure connectivity at all times. Our founder Richard Lindberg met with the team at an event in Istanbul and was impressed with the platform. We recently sat down with the team to get an overview of the services they offer.
How did Rent n Connect came about?
Rent ‘n Connect was founded by Ozgur Gen, and his friends from university, Alper and Baran, who all studied Mechanical Engineering at Bogazici University in İstanbul. At first, in 2012, their adventure started with providing Ipads for rent in cafes and restaurants. Then, after a while, they noticed a need in the travel industry due to travelers using the Ipads outside of the hotels instead of connecting in the restaurant and changed their direction towards the unmet need of traveler connectivity. Globalization and changes in travelers’ habits with the conformity of technology and social media caused travelers to seek to be connected at all times to share their holidays, memories and experiences during their trips instantly and head for alternative solutions instead of paying high roaming fees. Ozgur, Baran, and Alper saw an opportunity in this lack of convenience for travelers and that’s how they came up with Rent ‘n Connect.
What’s the service offering and the benefits?
The service we provide is a very clever reflection of a problematic area. People usually have a stressful time planning their trips and always make a budget for their internet or Wi-Fi needs. They either look for accommodation with Wi-Fi, buy sim cards or pay high roaming fees just for their trips. Our services answer most of the traveling issues of today’s connected people, whether it is businessmen or large families. With our devices, we provide local data connections at 4G speed with affordable prices that can be shared with up to 10 devices or people, with fixed daily rates, making it a better option than buying sim cards or connecting via roaming. It’s affordable, easier and unlimited, giving users the luxury to stay connected freely like they are at home!
How many countries is the service available in and what does it cost?
Currently, we are providing services to be used in more than 130 countries! It goes up rapidly so very soon they are hoping to be in more than 150 countries. Our prices depend on the destination the device will be used. For locations where we have country-specific deals, the daily price is €5.99 and for global usage and or multi-country usage like the European Union it’s €9.99. The thing is our device will give you unlimited data with 4G speed and has the ability to share the connection with up to 10 people. For Europe reservations, if the device is used by 10 people it will cost €0.99 per person a day or for specific countries, the price goes down to €0.59 per day! It’s easy to pick up since we have an easy delivery and return options in all over Europe, the UK, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.
How does the reusability of the devices and the pick-up and drop-off systems work?
Actually, our services as a whole promote sustainability and reusability as we don’t sell devices. Most customers travel a couple of times during a year and they don’t need these services at all times throughout the whole year. So what Rent ‘n Connect does is provide them with a device compatible with current connectivity needs depending on their destinations. With help from our partners and partners’ offices, customers can directly pick up their Pocket Wi-Fi from the hotels that they will be staying at, or at airports or Airbnb addresses. We provide a large number of choices depending on the needs of the customer. After the user is done with their trip or is done using the device, they can leave their device at the hotel and inform Rent n’ Connect about it so that they can arrange a return pick-up courier. Users can also mail the device or leave it at partner offices in cities or airports such as Heathrow Airport, Berlin Tegel Airport, Munich International Airport and New Istanbul Grand Airport. After the device is received, bags are changed, cleaned and recharged and personalized for another customer’s journey! So there are a lot of devices that may have traveled the world more than once! We are proud of it and it excites us to think of it as a service and an example of sustainable traveling.
Who is your typical user?
Actually, anybody who travels and uses the internet is our typical user. In today’s world everybody is using web services during a vacation abroad or a business trip, so staying connected becomes a huge problem. Students need to contact their parents and let them know they are ok. Business people need to keep up with their workplaces and continue to work abroad. People want to keep up with the world. Most people nowadays are watching videos online or their favorite shows with streaming services like Netflix, Apple+, Disney+, Hulu, etc. We always need to know, be aware and see so when we travel we always find a way to stay connected but it’s not always so convenient. For example, a businessman shouldn’t trust a Cafe’s Public Wi-Fi connection because it’s not safe for anybody! Wi-Fi and connectivity is a huge problem abroad and who doesn’t want a connection at all times that is safe, secure, dependable and affordable? If we can’t even do without a GPS in our hometowns, imagine how essential it is for tourists. In their search for museums or simply while out for a stroll they may end up lost and unable to find their way back. Without connectivity, this issue becomes all the more challenging. Our typical users are people who want to have a safe, comfortable trip anywhere around the world.
Finally, amidst the coronavirus pandemic, here’s a new offering
We are currently trying to make another product for Remote workers. Everybody is working from home and staying safe, so a reliable connection makes a great difference in the quality of work and life at home. So we have prepared a special blog page for people who want to know more about remote working and the solutions we are providing during these times.
We can offer a special price for people who want to learn more. To know more about this, click here.