The Best Satellite Communicator for Me?

What is the Best Satellite Communicator for Me?

Garmin inReach Mini 2

Garmin GPSMAP 67i

ACR Bivy Stick

Jerry, from [Me and Her After Kids] met up this last weekend to talk about why satellite communicators are important, then we grouped each of these satellite messengers for what they are best at.

Check out Jerry’s YouTube Channel. Jerry and Candy are out camping and hiking all around Colorado, plus they have a new Truck Pop-up Camper and they have a lot of great advice, and Tips & Tricks they have learned over the years to make your outdoor adventures more comfortable and enjoyable.

Me And Her After Kids

Why Satellite Communicators are Important

Within the last month, there have been three critical injuries in the Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP), from falls off cliffs, with two of these resulting in helicopter hoists rescues from the Air National Guard. Check out one of the articles by clicking on the image below.

Rocky Mountain National Park

I could go on and on with examples of why it’s important to always carry a satellite communicator or satellite messenger with you, but I think you understand the point I am trying to get across.

Best Camping Communicators

Garmin inReach MessengerHere are the best Satellite Communicators, and they are perfect for camping if you’re outside cell service.

Best Hiking Communicators

Check out these Satellite Messengers that I rank the highest for hiking.

Best 4-wheel & ATV Communicators

These are some of the best Satellite Communicators for ATV’s or Off-roading.

Best All-in-one Communicators

Most Simple Communicators

Most High Tech Communicators

Best All Around Communicators

Final Thoughts

I have been testing these satellite communicators for 4 years now, and there are things I found along the way that I liked and didn’t like in satellite messengers. My opinions are based on four years of owning and field testing all of these devices, except for the Garmin Tread Series devices.

I would be more than happy to answer any questions you might have or help direct you towards the best satellite communicator for you. Please leave a comment below and I will get back to you within 24 hours, unless I am on one of my outdoor adventures, then it may take a little longer.

Check out this YouTube video below where Jerry and I have a great question and answer session about what satellite messenger may be to best in each category.

Sale
Garmin GPSMAP 67i Rugged GPS Handheld with inReach® Satellite Technology, Two-Way Messaging, Interactive SOS, Mapping
  • Large 3” sunlight-readable color display for easy viewing
  • Enable two-way messaging and location tracking via the 100% global Iridium satellite network, and trigger an interactive SOS to Garmin Response℠, a 24/7 staffed emergency response coordination center (active subscription required; some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communications devices)
  • Access preloaded TopoActive mapping from Garmin, view satellite imagery, and navigate with multi-band GNSS support and sensors
  • When paired with your compatible smartphone, you can access active weather forecasts and Geocaching Live
  • Use with the Garmin Explore website or app on your compatible smartphone to help you plan trips and more
  • Get access to a wide variety of premium mapping content delivered directly to your device via Wi-Fi technology with an Outdoor Maps+ subscription

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Garmin inReach Mini 2, Lightweight and Compact Satellite Communicator, Hiking Handheld, Orange - 010-02602-00
  • Compact, lightweight satellite communicator enables two-way messaging and interactive SOS globally (Active satellite subscription required. Some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices.).Special Feature:Bluetooth.Water Resistant: Yes
  • Navigate back to where you started by using TracBack routing
  • Share your location with loved ones back home at any time (active satellite subscription required) by using your MapShare page or with your coordinates embedded in your messages
  • Get accurate heading information using the digital compass — even when you’re not moving
  • Sync with the Garmin Explore app and website on your compatible smartphone for trip planning and topographical mapping, and create waypoints, courses, activities and collections you can sync to your device
  • Pair with Garmin devices, such as wearables and handhelds, and use them to send and receive messages and trigger an SOS (active satellite subscription required)

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Garmin Montana 750i, Rugged GPS Handheld with Built-in inReach Satellite Technology and 8-megapixel Camera,Glove-Friendly 5"" Color Touchsreen" (010-02347-00)
  • Features rugged military-grade construction and a 5” touchscreen display that’s 50% larger than the previous model; 8-megapixel camera lets you capture images anywhere you go
  • Trigger an interactive SOS to the GEOS 24/7 monitoring center — two-way messaging via the 100% global Iridium satellite network (active satellite subscription required; some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communications devices).
  • Multi-GNSS (GPS and Galileo) support — plus preloaded TopoActive and City Navigator maps; navigation sensors include 3-axis compass and barometric altimeter
  • Pro-connected with ANT+ technology, Wi-Fi connectivity and BLUETOOTH wireless networking, giving you direct-to-device access to BirdsEye Satellite Imagery downloads, location sharing, Connect IQ app support and more
  • Compatible with the Garmin Explore website and app to help you manage waypoints, routes, activities and collections, use tracks and review trip data from the field

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Garmin inReach® Messenger Handheld Satellite Communicator, Global Two-Way Messaging
  • Small, rugged, lightweight satellite communicator enables two-way text messaging even in areas with no cell coverage (Active satellite subscription required. Some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices)
  • Send two-way messages globally; easily text back and forth directly with friends via the Garmin Messenger app, even when you’re out of cellular coverage. (Active satellite subscription required. Some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices.)
  • Group messaging via the Garmin Messenger smartphone app lets you share your adventures with multiple contacts simultaneously — and have group text chats with friends and family
  • Check in with contacts directly by using preset messages that do not count toward your allotted text messages (Active satellite subscription required. Some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices)
  • Share your GPS location (Active satellite subscription required. Some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices)
  • Trigger an interactive SOS to the Garmin IERCC 24/7-staffed monitoring and coordination center for help in an emergency (Active satellite subscription required. Some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices)

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Garmin Alpha 300i Handheld, Advanced Tracking and Training Handheld with inReach® Technology
13 Reviews
Garmin Alpha 300i Handheld, Advanced Tracking and Training Handheld with inReach® Technology
  • Features a vivid sunlight-readable 3.5” capacitive touchscreen display and a button-operated, dog-focused design for quick, minor adjustments
  • Easily set up and monitor up to 20 dogs with your compatible dog collars from up to 9 miles away (depending on your dog collar) with up to a 2.5-second update rate
  • With an Outdoor Maps+ subscription, you have access to a wide variety of premium mapping content that is regularly updated and wirelessly delivered directly to your Alpha 300i handheld when connected to a wireless network
  • Dog list and group management let you keep non-paired dog information in the handheld for easier setup
  • Send interactive SOS alerts and two-way messaging via the 100% global Iridium satellite network with inReach satellite technology (active subscription required; some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices; it is the responsibility of the user to know and follow all applicable laws in the jurisdictions where the device is intended to be used)
  • Communicate directly with Garmin ResponseSM [global search and rescue coordination center] when there’s an emergency

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Sale
Garmin 010-01735-10 inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with Topo Maps and GPS Navigation
  • 100 percent global Iridium satellite coverage enables two way text messaging from anywhere (satellite subscription required)
  • Trigger an interactive SOS to the 24/7 search and rescue monitoring center
  • Track and share your location with family and friends. Water rating : IPX7. Battery : Rechargeable internal lithium ion
  • Pair with mobile devices using the free earthmate app for access to downloadable maps, U.S. NOAA charts, color aerial imagery and more
  • In reach explorerplus device adds preloaded Delorme topo maps with onscreen GPS routing plus built in digital compass, barometric altimeter and accelerometer

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Sale
ACR Bivy Stick Satellite Communicator - Global Two-Way SMS Text Messaging, GPS Tracking, Maps & Navigation, Emergency SOS, Weather Reports, & Location Sharing - Android & iOS Compatible App
  • 🌐 GLOBAL SATELLITE COMMUNICATOR & SATELLITE PHONE ALTERNATIVE: 100% global Iridium satellite coverage for two-way SMS text messaging, GPS tracking, maps & navigation, emergency SOS, weather reports, and location sharing. Compatible with iOS & Android apps. Subscription required. Monthly: (Basic $19.99 | Plus $34.99 | Unlimited $59.99). Annual: (Basic $14.99 | Plus $29.99 | Unlimited $54.99). One time 3-month commitment per device, then month-to-month. Plans available globally.
  • 📡 TRI-NETWORK COVERAGE & APP-TO-APP MESSAGING: Benefit from least-cost routing with priority given to Wi-Fi, followed by cellular, and then satellite. Effortlessly connect with others using app-to-app messaging, your dedicated phone number, or email. Choose ACR Bivy Stick, the leading alternative to satellite phones for unrestricted two-way communication, and the freedom to initiate and receive messages confidently.
  • 👥 GROUP Messaging & Tracking: Keep your crew connected with GroupTrack, featuring group messaging and location sharing for up to 12 people. Monitor your team off-grid using the Bivy Stick and app or in-network via a web browser. Ideal for search & rescue, guiding services, remote workers, outfitters, adventure racing, overlanding groups, and more.
  • 💬 CHECK-IN WITH EASE & GPS LOCATION SHARING: Effortlessly send unlimited & customizable check-in messages that include your GPS location with this advanced outdoor communication device. Use the dedicated check-in button on the device or through the app to keep your loved ones updated on your whereabouts. A shareable webpage displays a map with your GPS coordinates and a check-in breadcrumb trail, allowing others to follow your journey.
  • 🗺️ OFFLINE MAPS & NAVIGATION: Download detailed maps from around the world to ensure you're never lost, even without cellular service. Easily navigate and track your location off the grid using device-based GPS with this satellite messenger. The Bivy app offers over 50,000 adventures to explore, with 20 different adventure types available. Monitor your pace, mileage, altitude, and more on your journey.

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ZOLEO Satellite Communicator – Two-Way Global SMS Text Messenger & Email, Emergency SOS Alerting, Check-in & GPS Location – Android iOS Smartphone Accessory
  • 🌎ZOLEO GLOBAL TWO-WAY SATELLITE COMMUNICATOR: Rugged, GPS location-aware and Iridium satellite based, the ZOLEO device links with the free ZOLEO app on your smartphone to keep you connected when outside cell coverage. Monthly subscription required: $20, $35 or $50 (25, 250 or unlimited satellite messages) with unlimited check-in, SOS, cell and Wi-Fi messages included. After the initial 3-month commitment, suspend for just $4/mo. Plans available in USA, Canada, Australia, EU but work globally.
  • ✉️GLOBAL MESSAGING AS IT WAS MEANT TO BE: ZOLEO extends your messaging coverage to everywhere on earth transmitting over the lowest cost network available (satellite, cellular or Wi-Fi). ZOLEO offers a familiar text messaging experience to and from any SMS text number, email address or another ZOLEO app user. By taking advantage of cellular or Wi-Fi when available and the Iridium network (a truly global satellite network) when it isn’t, ZOLEO offers seamless coverage wherever you go!
  • 📲DEDICATED SMS PHONE NUMBER & EMAIL ADDRESS: Your assigned ZOLEO SMS number and email address allows your contacts to initiate messaging with you, as opposed to them waiting to receive a message from you to which they can reply.
  • 🆘EMERGENCY ALERTING & MEDICAL ASSIST: If something goes wrong, declaring an SOS ensures your SOS alert and GPS coordinates are sent to the expert 24/7 emergency monitoring service. Your ZOLEO service also includes Medical Assist, a convenient 24/7 chat service for non-emergency medical advice, help locating medical services or replacing medical supplies.
  • ✅CHECK-IN & LOCATION SHARING: Check in to let others know you’re OK (using built-in device button or the ZOLEO app) and share your GPS location via messages, check-ins, automated Location Share+ updates or through a secure Share Map URL. Location Share+ (add-on at $6/mo) allows for automatic location sharing at a selected interval and includes a breadcrumb trail viewable on a map.

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Spot X with Bluetooth 2-Way Satellite Messenger | SOS Protection | Handheld Portable 2-Way GPS Messenger for Hiking, Camping, Cars| Globalstar Satellite Network Coverage | Subscription Applicable
  • SYNC WITH BLUETOOTH: Connect to SpotX to cellphone so you can communicate with family or even search and rescue; Use as a standalone communication device with it's own dedicated US mobile number to receive messages
  • PEACE OF MIND: Send S.O.S. to 24/7 Search & Rescue service, message back and forth about the nature of your emergency, receive confirmation when help is on the way; Message any cell number or email address virtually anywhere
  • GLOBALSTAR SATELLITE & SPOT products use GPS to determine location and transmit GPS coordinates to others; SPOT users can notify friends, family or emergency rescue their exact GPS coordinates
  • WHAT'S IN THE BOX: SpotX Device, strap and carabiner, micro usb data/power cable, quick start guide, SOS mirrored sticker, warranty card and kickstand
  • PURCHASE, ACTIVATE, EXPLORE: Grab a Spot X 2-way Satellite Messenger; Activate by selecting your service plan; Get out there and explore the world with peace of mind

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Sale
Spot Gen 4 Satellite GPS Messenger | Handheld Portable GPS Messenger for Hiking, Camping, Outdoor Activities | Globalstar Satellite Network Coverage | Subscription Applicable
  • MEANT FOR ADVENTURE: Spot Gen4 provides critical, life-saving line of communication when you travel beyond cell towers; Let family know you're ok or push the SOS button to send your GPS to emergency responders if you need help
  • NO CELL PHONE OR SERVICE-NO PROBLEM: With the Tracking feature Gen4 can transmit location updates when you are moving and when you stop; Keep one in your child's backpack for the walk home
  • GLOBALSTAR SATELLITE & SPOT products use GPS to determine location and transmit GPS coordinates to others; SPOT users can notify friends, family or emergency rescue their exact GPS coordinates
  • WHAT'S IN THE BOX: Spot Gen4 device, Strap and Carabiner, USB Cable, Batteries and quick start guide; Subscription required; Two service plans available
  • PURCHASE, ACTIVATE, EXPLORE: Grab a Spot Gen4; Activate by selecting your service plan; Get out there and explore the world with peace of mind

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Motorola Defy Satellite Link - Rugged Handheld GPS Communicator, Two-Way Global SMS Text Messenger, Emergency SOS Alerting - Android iOS Compatible, Black
  • Service plans required - as low as $4.99 per month for SOS satellite assist
  • Provides advanced 2-way satellite-enabled messaging. Compatible with iOS 14 and Android 10 and later smartphones
  • Stay in contact wherever you go—reliable satellite coverage keeps you firmly on the grid even if you're off the edge of the map, ensuring you're in touch with those who matter
  • Simply press the check-in button and send your coordinates or a message to your loved ones, giving them peace of mind whilst you do your thing
  • SOS assist allows you to check in and trigger SOS without a connection; unlimited SOS included with every service plan

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Sale
Garmin 010-01735-10 inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with Topo Maps and GPS Navigation
  • 100 percent global Iridium satellite coverage enables two way text messaging from anywhere (satellite subscription required)
  • Trigger an interactive SOS to the 24/7 search and rescue monitoring center
  • Track and share your location with family and friends. Water rating : IPX7. Battery : Rechargeable internal lithium ion
  • Pair with mobile devices using the free earthmate app for access to downloadable maps, U.S. NOAA charts, color aerial imagery and more
  • In reach explorerplus device adds preloaded Delorme topo maps with onscreen GPS routing plus built in digital compass, barometric altimeter and accelerometer

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support-hiking-emergency-beacon

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