Our last advices for travelers planning to go to Myanmar is about communication… written and posted arund 5 am Yangon time when the web is working….
Please note the date of this post. Because it is most probably irrellevant within the next 12 months. Or maybe before.
I’ll jump straight to the main issues:
- International roaming doesn’t exist. So forget about bringing your phone (or rather using the one you have for calling/sms’ing).
- LOCAL SIM CARDS: Sometimes you can buy sim card at the airport. A year ago we bought one for 50 US$ including including credit. The credit we didn’t use we got back when we left the country. So we ended up using around 22 US in the two weeks we were there. The next time we got back the price was double – BUT for the sim car only! And it was only valid for a month. And NO refunds
Today you can’t get sim at all.
- If you are staying for a long time and need a phone you can get a sim card on the 2nd hand market – aka Black Market. At the time of writing it cost you between 250 and 350 US. The recharge cards are fairly cheap and the fastes/best way to get online.
- It exists and it exists everywhere. But its so slow that except for a few services it’s useless. We have our own connection supplied by Redlink and have tried connections by other providers. So we know what we’re talking about.
- All cities have internet cafes. And all restaurants, bars and cafes with an international crowd have wifi. But most of the connections are useless (very, very slow) unless you use a smart phone.
For reasons unknown to us Google is very difficult to access – and when possible its mostly in the HTML version. But easier to get on your smart phone. When/if there is an important political situation/event happening services like Twitter, Viber etc are blogged or very slow.
Again – this is the situation at the time of writing. We have had one of the new tele players in the Myanmar market staying with us. And he promised us that this will change – and change fast.
So unless you are planning to go within the next year don’t let this bothering you.
As mentioned this is the 7th travel advice to Myanmar. We spend as much time here as possible and try to update the advices when we register relevant changes. If you have comments or want to add your own experiences – please forward the so we can distribute them to fellow travelers.
AND FINALLY AND MOST IMPORTANT:
These advices are only meant to make your planning and visit to Myanmar easier, cheaper and more comfortable. We haven’t commented on destinations, sights and other stuff where personal interests means everything.
But it doesn’t mean that we don’t want to share our experiences and knowledge. If you have questions about specific sights, traveling routes etc don’t hesitate to mail us. If we have been there and/or experienced it and if we have an opinion we love to share it…
That’s it for now.
Travel to Myanmar