Some people look on vacations as an opportunity to escape from the tyranny of their digital devices while others think a vacation without access to their smartphones and laptops sounds more like punishment than fun. If you’re a member of the latter group, check out these three small countries that are great vacation spots with world-class high-speed internet.
(The connection speeds cited in this article are mean fixed broadband download speeds as measured by Speedtest.)
The Principality of Andorra
Andorra is a well-known duty-free, tax haven and vacation destination located in the Pyrenees between Spain and France. What’s less well known is that Andorra renovated its fiber optic network in late 2016 and now has one of the fastest fixed broadband internet connections in Europe.
Mean fixed broadband download speed in Andorra leaped from somewhere around 50 Mbps to just over 120 Mbps in 2017. It’s since dropped to 89.39 Mbps. Speedtest notes that a drop like this is common because people go online more when they discover their internet speed has markedly improved. Even at 89.39 Mpbs, Andorra is faster than neighboring Spain which ranked 12th in the World in Speedtest’s Global Index for August at 87.74 Mbps, and France which ranked 18th at 81.45 Mbps.
The Principality of Monaco
Monaco is another duty-free, tax haven with a reputation as a playground for the rich and famous. In 2016 the principality finalized a direct fiber-to-home network connection for all residences. Since then, fixed broadband download speed has climbed to a blistering 130.05 Mbps. In Europe, only Iceland at 147.13 Mbps was faster in August.
The Bailiwick of Jersey
The island of Jersey off the coast of Normandy, France isn’t as well-known as a vacation spot as Andorra and Monaco but it has a lot to offer if you like beaches, history or food.
Jersey’s fixed broadband download speeds increased steadily from just below 40 Mbps in Q1-Q2 2016 to almost 80 Mbps during the same time frame in 2018. Then a full-fiber rollout for the entire island kicked into high gear and download speed skyrocketed to 155.41 Mps this past August. That exceptionally fast speed may not last if the phenomenon seen in Andorra is repeated, but even if it doesn’t, Jersey should still have one of the fastest download speeds in Europe.
Andorra, Monaco and Jersey are not included in the Speedtest Global Index either because they don’t have enough unique monthly user tests to qualify, or they’re not UN Member States or Permanent Observers. If they had been included, Jersey would rank 2nd in the world behind only Singapore (at 189.38 Mbps), Monaco would rank 5th (with Jersey included), and Andorra would rank 14th. For comparison purposes, with the addition of these three small countries, the US would rank 8th (100.07 Mbps), Canada 22nd (80.14 Mbps) and Mexico 71st (22.4 Mbps).
Andorra, Jersey and Monaco offer very different vacation experiences but they all have one thing in common. You won’t be wasting your vacation time in frustration while you wait for a website to load if you visit any of them.