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Traveler’s SIM card deal in Italy

Posted by on Oct 30, 2014 in All posts, Italy | 0 comments

There seems to be little competition in the SIM card department in Italy. The usual ordeal, we were looking for a way to stay connected, this time in Rome. Our apartment comes with was advertised as ‘free Internet’ and that is a giveaway to the Internet situation in Italy. Portable WIFI eggs are something we have only enjoyed in South Korea and Japan so far. I know Vodafone is experimenting in Germany but overall Europe is not quiet there yet. Many apartments in Rome are offered in a way that makes WIFI a very special bonus feature. Anyhow, WIFI at the apartment worked fine up until we had a power shortage. Which couldn’t be solved until the owner had time to arrive and fix it. So we really needed to get a SIM card. Even without internet, we found...

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Mobile phone internet for travelers in Portugal

Posted by on May 14, 2014 in All posts, Portugal | 10 comments

If you are planning to visit Portugal for not longer than a month, you can get a very good offer from Meo – the Portuguese brand name for telecommunications services provided by Portugal Telecom. Meo sells a SIM card for €10 – that includes 10 GB of internet traffic and a €5 credit which can be used for phone calls and is valid for one month. We found the offer in one of Meo‘s mobile phone and internet shops at Lisbon’s Armazens do Chiado shopping mall. There are three different providers to choose from – one was Vodafone, the other Optimus but Meo clearly won. The super deal.   This start package was enough for our first four weeks in Portugal. Now, that we have decided to prolong our stay on Portuguese Madeira island, where no internet connection comes...

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Our apartment rental in Seoul

Posted by on Jul 16, 2013 in All posts, South Korea | 2 comments

Renting in a foreign country, in places as exotic as Asia, is easier and not as exotic as one might think. In fact, many places to stay are up to western standards and I have to smile a bit when writing this because in many areas, Asia is a lot more accessible than one might think., We use these sites to check on homes. We do take some time to pick an apartment, inspect pictures and clarify specifics. Like checking the apartment’s location on the map, before making a booking. Locations do not have to be right in the centre but easily accessible by public transport to save time and money. Offers vary greatly not only in price but communication with the host. We always make contact beforehand via mail to check on apartment features that are important to...

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Final 24 hours in Tokyo: sightseeing, shopping, internet tips

Posted by on Jun 2, 2013 in All posts, Japan | 0 comments

May 31st/June 1st, 2013. Diary format. In retrospect I  can say that I am very satisfied with our three months stay in Tokyo. We have eaten deliciously, we have shopped delightfully, we have visited Kamakura and Nikko, two cities of beautiful temples close to Tokyo, we have met great people and enjoyed our everyday life in one of the most fabulous and advanced cities on Earth. Our house was probably the best (and most expensive) place we have rented during our travels so far. And I have so gotten used to the life style of Japanese upper middle class. Time to let go. This is a loooong post on a loooong last day in Tokyo, before we left for Seoul. Enjoy a beautiful Japanese temple and my last shopping recommendations. Since we never watch TV – a shame, as...

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Behind the scenes – North Korea vs Internet

Posted by on Apr 17, 2013 in All posts, Perpetual travel issues, Thoughts and Treasures | 1 comment

When I turn on my laptop things generally work. I can access the websites I like, I can surf around the net without interruptions – all in all internet is a smooth ride for me, the end user behind the monitor. But behind the scenes things are ugly. Endless cyber attacks targeting websites – this blog gets spammed regularly, and so does my e-mail account. Not all sites are hit equally strong. Differently motivated hackers can easily block a site or in the worst case and more effort delete whole databases. This is what North Korea News has to face – probably more than others – due to their journalistic work about a country that is a locked up, state controlled bastion, solely tolerating propaganda reports. Freedom of speech is a luxury and dedicated people like Chad O’Carroll, the...

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Life of a freelancer

Posted by on May 10, 2012 in All posts, Perpetual travel issues | 2 comments

Work and play is a dream come true but it is not all rock and roll. The truth about working on the road is more down to earth. You got to earn the money and that for us means that we are basically always at work, come weekend or holiday. To some it may look like an ongoing holiday but through perpetual traveling the best of work and holiday become one. Here is the downside of the coin: Tomek is available 24/7 for most of his clients around the world, as meeting time differences between continents involves to be available at what is impossible hours to most. For me, it is to have an eye out for the unusual, beautiful and fascinating. I see so many things I would like to share, there is no time to write it...

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Internet access in Cambodia

Posted by on Apr 29, 2012 in All posts, Cambodia, Perpetual travel issues | 0 comments

Mobile Internet access. Cambodia may not be the country you have in mind when you think about modern and reliable Internet access. However, if you arrive at Phnom Penh International Airport, the first thing you will see after leaving the terminal are booths selling SIM cards. The list includes Beeline, Smart Mobile, Hello, Cellcard, Mobitel, just to name a few from around 10 mobile operators in this country. The prices are competitive, and you usually pay $1 for a SIM card, and around $3 per GB of data. The guys from Smart Mobile needed my passport to sell a prepaid SIM card, and made its photocopy. On the other hand, Hello employees didn’t even mention the passport as a requirement. Your mobile phone needs a micro-SIM card? No problem, they will cut it on the spot for you: For...

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Wifi, smoothie, cool off oasis

Posted by on Apr 24, 2012 in All posts, Thailand | 0 comments

If you happen to be in Bangkok and thirsty, looking for a quiet place to cool off in need of internet and a socket to charge your laptop, we found this oasis that Tomek and I have been visiting almost everyday. We are no coffee fans but will make an exception for Thailand’s chain café, called Blue Cup Coffee S&P. Once inside you get pure tranquillity, so you won’t have to put up with any annoying noisy background music, that is,  if you prefer a calm working environment with your laptop, like we do. The selection of premium quality beverages is classy and they also have a wide selection of yummy meals, ranging from pasta dishes to Indian to Japanese and Thai food. We usually have breakfast or lunch and are, so far, satisfied with what we get served,...

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Internet access in Thailand

Posted by on Apr 10, 2012 in All posts, Perpetual travel issues, Thailand | 0 comments

Mobile Internet access After arriving from Japan, where the Internet access is very problematic for a casual tourist, it is surprising how easy it can be to go online in Thailand. If you need mobile Internet in your laptop, simply visit the nearest True Move shop (can be there are other providers, TrueMove shop in Siam/Bangkok was easy to access for me) and buy a True Move H 3G+ SIM card. It costs 99 baht (around 2.5 €) and comes with a few megabytes included. The guys in the shop told me their 3G works in 850 MHz frequency band and were not sure if it worked with my 3G USB modem (Huawei E160). As 99 baht is not a big deal, I just bought their SIM card and it worked flawlessly (as I saw later, Huawei E160 spec...

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Internet access in Japan

Posted by on Mar 24, 2012 in All posts, Japan, Perpetual travel issues | 0 comments

Contrary to what you may think, Internet access in Japan is a big problem for casual tourists. For once, there are virtually no public wireless hotspots in Japan. I mean, there are plenty of them, but you can only use them if you have a mobile contract. And, if you’re just for a few weeks in Japan, the chances are you won’t have one. Hotels – lots of them don’t have wifi, and where they have it, it may be problematic (i.e. no reception in your room). The common case is Ethernet in your room (at least it means it works stable). Shinkansen, the bullet train? Some boast free wireless Internet – of course, only if you have a mobile contract. What about buying a prepaid card which would offer you Internet access over Japan’s 3G network (*all* mobile...

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