Living in the technological age, we want everything and want it now. Here is some information for your need it now, want it now inquiries…
If you would rather not rack up your telephone bill on roaming charges, the best option is to buy a local sim card. The top network operators are Dialog, Mobitel, Etisalat, and Airtel, and all have pre-paid plans. This means you can purchase a SIM card for around Rs.500 – Rs. 1,000 and keep topping up if necessary – you can also purchase a phone to go with your sim if you need to, but this will cost more. You can also make direct international calls from your mobile connections for the standard rate. In order to top up, you will need to provide the recharge card that is given with your phone or sim card. Once you give money and the recharge card, your phone will automatically be topped up.
Recharge cards can be purchased at any corner store.
Please note: If you are going to purchase a local SIM card alone, you will need to have an unlocked GSM phone.
Internet Access/Cyber Cafés
Internet facilities are available in most places. If your hotel does not have internet/email facilities, just ask for the nearest telecommunication store where you can browse away for very cheap.
Shops offering Internet services are found all over the city. On Galle Road you are rarely more than walking distance from one, and each shopping center has at least one. Access is cheap; most places charge around Rs. 60 per hour. We found these places quite useful:
Bristol Cyber Café
8/3/4 Bristol Street
Berty’s Cyber Café
380 Galle Road
941 Galle Road
Colombo also has few wi-fi spots. Some allow free wi-fi access, while others require the purchase of access codes. So far, wi-fi is available at Bandaranaike International Airport, Gallery Café, Barista, Barefoot Garden Café, Coffee Bean, and Cricket Club Café.
For international calls there are many relatively pricey private communication bureaus (which often have fax machines). A cheaper option is using the card-operated international direct dialing (IDD) telephones, of which there are many in Colombo.
Most Internet cafes in Colombo offer web-phone services, which cost about the same as regular Internet access.
All 5* hotels have business centers that offer a range of communication services, from email and fax to telephone.