Wi-Fi and 3G are two completely different things. Wi-fi is short range and brought to you through a wireless router that is hooked up to the internet. 3G is internet connectivity via cell towers (cell phone providers).
That all depends on what you use your laptop for. If you use your laptop while on vacation to actually work (performing data entry or writing documents), then I would say probably not. The Fire is primarily an entertainment device, not a "work" device. However, if you use your laptop when vacationing for listening to music, watching movies, reading books, getting email or surfing the net, then I'd guess you'll be able to make the switch without missing your laptop. At this point, with no independent reviewers having had a hands-on experience with the Fire, it's hard to predict exactly what its capabilities for individual users will be.
I think when you break it down, the Fire is a larger sized, Android powered device with similar functionality to (dare I say it) an iPod Touch. I have one ordered to take the place of my laptop for entertainment purposes-I still plan on using my laptop for "work" purposes. Even if the Fire has a good virtual keyboard, I prefer the physical ones. My Kindle 3 will remain my e reader unless the Fire really tops it in terms of view-ability. I'm hoping the Fire lives up to the marketing, especially when it comes to web browsing.
If you really want one, I would pre-order it. You won't be charged until it ships. I think with the popularity of this device, from what I have heard and read, and with a "leading consumer magazine" rating it very good, I would go ahead and pre-order to guarantee that you get one by mid-November. I ordered two. One for me and one for a gift. I already know it will not compete with IPad, but it WILL be great!
Unfortunately not, what they're saying is if you don't have access to a WiFi connection, you won't have any online features.
The Fire does NOT have a 3g connection option, so yes, there is no "paid" wireless service on it - however as mentioned above, that also means that you can only use it's online features when there is an accessible WiFi connection available. (In your home if you've gone wireless, a free WiFi access point (available in some stores, hotels,etc) or the like.)