In rural locations it is difficult getting a 3G signal. I have resorted to a MiFi from Zoom which can pick up a good 3G signal from the car in the drive! Now my laptop and phones can surf the net from the warmth of the bungalow using wifi. The Zoom is great because it will take any SIM and automatically establish a data connection. Also I have the flexibility to just use the USB stick direct into my computer.
In this configuration I am using a PAYG SIM from 3