Trans Eurasia travel

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Mobile & Internet connection

Purchasing SIM card in Iran is not a problems as their are widely available every where in city centers and even in the airports. They recommend to buy the one which start with 091..... as it keeps a good connection on the road. Expect to pay around 150 000 Rial (5 USD). You can top it up with credit ($5 should be sufficient) and even ask the staff to activate your internet connection. This will give you around 1,5 GB to be used for the next 30 days. But the speed is very slow. 

In Iran, internet cafes are known as coffeenets, though you'll rarely find coffee on the menu. You can get online in all but the smallest towns and villages. Most coffeenets charge about US$1.50 an hour, more in hotels. Speeds are variable, but most cities have ADSL connections.

Viruses, worms, Trojans and key-loggers are widespread. Access to thousands of websites is blocked by the government, from news sites to Skype. To get around this, most Iranians use a VPN client - set one up on your device before you leave home. If you don't, you will find hotel connections virtually useless, while coffeenets can sometimes get you around the wall. For news, try Al Jazeera's English service.

If you plan to use a messenger service, note that Yahoo! Messenger is used almost everywhere, but MSN Messenger is harder to find,  Skype is blocked.

Wi-fi is increasingly available in hotels and cafes but remains the exception rather than the rule. If you are desperate, access via a dial-up connection is possible using pre-paid cards bought from coffeenets or newsstands.

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