Muscat - Post Report Question and Answers

Is high-speed home Internet access available? How long does it typically take to install it after arrival?

Yes, it was good! The Embassy social sponsor set us up with a router until we could get our diplomatic ID cards and apply for service. It was a bit of a pain and confusing, but eventually it worked out. - Jan 2022

Yes, but it's not always fast and can take a very long time to get installed. This a major pain for a lot of new arrivals, and you should work with your sponsor to do everything possible before you arrive to try to make it as painless as possible. - Dec 2018

There are 2 main carriers: Ooredoo and Omantel.

Ooredoo: you can buy a router for $50 on day 1 and it comes with a SIM card essentially. 75GB will run you about $60. This will not last a normal family longer than 2 weeks so it's a short-term solution IMO. They currently do not offer unlimited data plans.

Omantel: This is hard wired by a tech that comes out to your house. The US embassy IRM recently made a deal with them to help employees get this set up quickly versus having to wait the 6 weeks for your MFA card. I don't know how well that program is working but supposedly it could be set up within 1-2 weeks of arrival.

I don't know the speeds and all that jazz. I guess fiber-optic is being installed in some neighborhoods. I find the speed of my Omantel internet to be sufficient with several family members able to watch shows online at the same time, etc. - Feb 2018

There are only two companies that provide home internet (same two provide phone plans). Both have a relatively decent connection, but are expensive- we pay $120/month for home internet. Any video chat programs (skype, viber and many videos on youtube) are prohibited, so to use them you have to use a VPN which makes the connection much slower and choppy. Generally, everything goes smoothly with the home internet until something breaks. The local companies are horrible about making appointments to come out to your home and the same goes for the initial installation. Patience, patience, patience! It took 6 weeks for the initial installation of the home internet for us and then everything was fine and smooth for a year until something went wrong with the router and it took them 3 weeks to come out to the house and fix it. - Aug 2017

Yes. Prices tend to be on par with the States but the service is spotty depending on the neighborhood and getting technical help takes patience. - Oct 2014

US$25/month for ADSL, but the line quality is poor, so it's pretty slow. Better plans are available and Omantel is reported to be installing fiber optic cable, which would be fantastic. - Jun 2012

Internet is fine and not too expensive. Get a VPN before you get to post. Skype is banned but you can circumvent it easily with a VPN - May 2012

Yes and costyl. Getting better and cheaper everyday. You have to ask for better plans though...they dont offer. - Aug 2011

It's more like slow speed internet. About 60 a month. - Feb 2011

Yes. I remember it being on the pricey side. - Apr 2010

Internet is available but during my time the only game in town had spotty service and the help desk wasn't. We had folks trying to get internet into their homes and waiting for over 3 months. As we were leaving a new company was offering wireless service based on cell phone technology and seemed to have a much better idea of how to do it and offer decent customer service. - Feb 2010

We had DSL service for 12 rials a month plus usage. As heavy users, our total bill came out to roughly US$100 per month. It wasn't terribly fast, though, and often "went out," plus the customer service was pretty spotty. Plus, Oman censors Web sites. Put the mouse down and go enjoy the outdoors! - Jan 2010

Yes. Cost is US$50 to 100 monthly. - Mar 2009

The single government monopoly provider offers ADSL home Internet for about US$30 a month plus usage charges; speed is variable from adequate to slow. Dial-up access is still available (billed to the phone line), but expensive and VERY slow. Some people are now using a simcard- based DSL system through the provider NAWRAS - it's said to be faster, but still goes through the government backbone. All Internet access is thoroughly filtered, with a concentration on making unavailable obscenity and some political content. Filtering reportedly hits Arabic speakers harder than those looking for English content online. - Feb 2008

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