How to Get Internet in Russia

September 24, 2011

It is so nice to be able to be back on the blog again! Yaroslavl is a wonderful place, but it unfortunately seems to have a lot of problems with the Internet. For the students coming out next, here are a few words of advice on how to get connected:

  • End up with a host family who has internet-This is ideal, but unfortunately most host families do not have internet in their homes. Also, you may have to work around their schedule or pay the family a fee to use it.
  • Use your university’s internet-This seems reliable, right? The problem with this is that some sites (including wordpress!) are blocked from the university computers. Also, they might just decide that the computer lab is a great place to sort files and not let anyone in it for a week (hem hem Yaroslavl Uni).
  • Go to an internet café-Russian internet cafés generally do not have their own computers, so bring a laptop. Also, not all of the cafés that advertise “free wifi” mean that they have free working wifi. Details, details. Over all though, this is pretty good for most people. My computer seems to have some sort of protective block and hasn’t worked at a single café, but most people find this works well once they’ve found a good café. Someone more technically inclined than I am (as most are!) would handle this fine.
  • Buy a modem-I finally did this after living here about a week, and it seems to be the best option. Keep in mind that you can only use the modem in the city where you buy it! I messed mine up by trying to go online outside the city (hence the delayed post). So, what is a modem? A modem is a little device you plug into your USB port and it gives you internet. Ta-da! You can buy them once you arrive. Mine cost about 850 rubles (about 30 USD) from Связной. I have “Мегафон,” and it’s supposed to be the better of the providers. It provides sometimes slow and patchy internet, sometimes flawless and lovely internet. Россия с умом не понят.
I hope that this post proves helpful to students who will be heading abroad to Russia. I promise that something more fun is to follow. Oh, my friends, I have so many stories for you!
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4 Responses to “How to Get Internet in Russia”

  1. salomon babayaro said

    post more photos? Preferably of your posterior, but some yaroslavic scenery would suffice. Take a photograph of your modem maybe so i have something to throw darts at.

  2. sarahinthegoldencircle said

    Update on modems: I would highly recommend Yota or Skylink modems if you’re studying abroad in Russia. If you live in a big city, you should be able to get a Yota or Skylink modem quite easily. Yota is unfortunately not available in Yaroslavl, however Skylink is. To buy a Skylink modem, go to Площадь Богаявления (the last stop on the #6 tram line). The store is pretty much unmarked, but just go into the building with the post office. The store is right across the hall from the post and looks more like a office of sorts than a store. Wait in line and ask for a Skylink modem. When purchasing any important electronics in Russia, be sure to bring your passport!

    Yota and Skylink do cost a bit more than Мегафон/Билайн/МТС, but especially if you’re spending an entire year abroad, I would highly recommend getting one of these. In the long run, you’ll save money from frustrated cafe trips when your Мегафон doesn’t get a signal, plus you may end up cracking halfway through the year and buying Yota or Skylink anyways. If you need internet for anything important, I would recommend just buying one of the nicer modems right off the bat. I wish I’d known to do that!

  3. […] internet asap. I would recommend skylink. For details, check my post on How to Get Internet in Russia. I have instructions on how to get skylink written in the […]

  4. […] problems for the rest of the year if you just do this. See the comments in my post on “How to Get Internet in Russia” for details. Trust me, it will save you so much frustration and stress. It will help you […]

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