I don’t have a cell phone and don’t want one. But after much urging from my wife, I have agreed to get one for extra safety while kayaking. Verizon seems to have the best coverage where I’ll be. Since I only plan to use it in emergencies, I’d like the cheapest possible plan - only need voice, don’t need texting or web stuff. However, if possible I’d like a waterproof model, since if I ever do need it, it might be while on the water. Looks like the cheap plans on Verizon have only a few possible phones, none waterproof. Am I missing some possible way of doing this? Thanks!
no such thing
as a truly waterproof cell phone. A few highly water resistant models exists, but nothing that can take a dunking.
Best bet, get something cheap, and invest in a nice waterproof drybox, or drybag. Some like Aquapac, you can talk through while the phone remains inside and protected.
Or Otterbox - or VHF radio?
You can't work the phone thru an Otterbox, but but the hard plastic isn't going to rip on you. Depending on your point of view about cluttered decks, you could attach a small Otterbox gholding the phone to your front deck rigging.
However, you paddle on the ocean. If the concern is about on-water emergencies rather than just calling in to say you will be late, you would be better off getting a submersible VHF radio. You couldn't call home on it, but it is likely to get a better response in an emergency than dealing with a cell phone that can't get wet.
I’d second the recommendation for a VHF. It’ll be a lot cheaper, and more effective in an emergency.
You can get a submersible Standard Horizon vhf for $80 now. That’s less than you’ll spend to set up a cell phone account, to say nothing of the monthly fees and a waterproof box, etc.
an Icom waterproof in a dry bag on my PFD and also a little Go phone in a waterproof box in my day hatch.
The cell is a back up. I’m clever enough to get a call and is handy for calling home, or meeting people.
Both my dry bags got a leak but they were/are effective at limiting exposure to the salt water.
Another option is a PLB.
there are rugger phones, but…
There are some rugger phones, including ones that are at least water resistant, but probably not worth it. You'd pay a lot. Better option is getting a dry bag or box for it. They do have some which fit phones and you can talk through.
If it was a matter of worrying about the phones, you could get the extra insurance policy the company will try to sell you which will replace the phone if you lose it or break it. I know one guy who has that, and he feels he can use his phone on the water out of a bag and just get it replaced if it gets soaked. Of course, it helps that he is a VERY good paddler.
Some recover from a dunking better
After seeing what my "LG" phone went through, (totally submerged for about a minute) and recovered, it will probably be a long time before I buy anything except an LG.
I have a Casio G’zOne Boulder
It’s highly water resistant, dust and shock proof. Casio makes no claims of actual waterproofedness but many owners reviews claim the phone survives dunkings well.
A cell phone sized Pelican box is
$15.I just put mine in my dry bag.
Aquapac FlipPhone Case
My husband and I both use Aquapac FlipPhone cases - http://www.thewaterproofstore.com/aqua080.html
I've used mine for over a year now, dozens of trips and it shows no sign of leakage. Fits in the pocket of my PFD, never have to take it out of the case till I'm off the water.
We have some in stock at our shop in Bristol, RI: www.oceanstateadventures.com. Also, I live in New Bedford if you wanted to meet up somewhere and take a look at it.
Always have VHF
I guess I should have said…I always paddle with a submersible VHF on my PFD. The cell phone is back-up and for less severe problems. E.g. when a problem ends up with a remote beach landing and calling a wife or friend or 911 is more appropriate than calling SeaTow or coast guard. For example, a friend took some white-water paddlers ocean surfing in sea kayaks, and one promptly dislocated a shoulder while executing an over-vigorous roll. They landed on the beach 5 miles from their car, and calling 911 on the cell phone was the thing to do. That convinced me that having a cell phone in addition to VHF was a good thing. The phone doesn’t need to be waterproof or water-resistant for that, but it seems like water-resistance would give an extra level of back-up if you ever needed to use it while on the water with wet, salty, trembling fingers.
flip phone case looks perfect
So the phone is OK being carried in the open position in a pfd pocket?
A non-flip phone will probably be easier to carry, use in a waterproof bag, and also be less prone to getting broken.
However, if you don’t need the phone for emergency use, why not just keep it in a drybag in your dayhatch?
I don’t know where you get the
info that Verizon does not have a “dunkable” phone. I have the Boulder model. The first time I used it was in the shower . . . important phone call and I pulled it in with me, thinking it was better now to find out if it worked. No leaks or problems.
I dunk the phone when it gets muddy or water plants splashed on it. No leaks.
I understand the phone was developed to military standards, in terms of shock-resistance and water-resistance.
It’s dunkable, and I paddle routinely with it bungeed to the mesh pocket of my PFD.
The only thing I hate about the phone is the button that triggers a vocal “Please wait . . .” message sometimes as I open it. I don’t know what comes after “please wait . . .” because I quickly snap the phone shut to end that obnoxious voice. Someday, I’ll read the phone manual and find that damned button. There must be some way to drown that voice, even though the phone is dunkable.
The Verizon Boulder model
is dunkable. See longer post below.
Dry Pak case
I use the dry pak flip phone case that is shown in trillium lakes link above with an inexpensive Moterola flip phone and am very satisfied with it.fo Folds up fine and is easy to use and to hear through.I haven’t had occasion to dunk it yet, but find it invaluable in wet and muddy construction situations.
No, you close it
The plastic is thin enough so you can close the phone.
dry pak case
The dry pak case has a velcro button to keep it closed when not in use. I find it better than the Aquapak which i use a rubberband to keep closed.
It could be the “Clear” button.
That activates the Voice Dialing feature on many Verizon phones. That’s what does it on my LG. On mine, pushing the “Clear” button again ends the voice dialing mode.