Finding an internet connection abroad

Tuk Tuks

Tuk Tuks

The job of the graphic designer is interesting, because you are not tied down to a particular place. It doesn’t matter in which part of the world, which county are you right now, you can do your job anywhere.

A while ago we showed our plans to the clients on paper. Today we don’t need this, everything is digitalized. We send the website layouts in jpeg form, and the print design plans in pdf to the clients, via email. Nowadays we don’t even need paper while doing books and periodicals, because with the help of Adobe Acrobat Professional our customers can comment the questionable parts of a book, and suggest changes.

There’s no need for paper, it’s enough if you take a reliable Macbook in your backpack and you can do your job anywhere, anytime.

But there’s something, that you need to sustain this job and lifestyle. You need a dependable and fast internet connection. And there can be some problem and fatigue with this. It’s practical to choose a place where the infrastructure is developed, which usually means frequented tourist centers – if you’d like to work in the sunshine, near the coast.

Kanchanaburi, Thailand

Kanchanaburi, Thailand

In Pattaya, Thailand – where I’m currently staying – there are many internet cafés, and moreover the traditional cafés and restaurants all have wifi connection. You’d think that you could just grab your laptop, sit inside a café and do your job all day. Obviously it’s not that easy, you can’t just sit in a café all day long. Most of the hotels also have wifi connection, but the one I’m staying at doesn’t.

The real solution would be, if you could have access to your own mobile internet, but attaining this in an alien country is hard. But the other day I tried to go after this issue.

I went into the Hutch Communications store, located in the South Pattaya Road (Pattaya Tai), which is located near to the famous Tuk Com. “Yes” – they answered, they have a mobile internet service, a Huawei USB modem is 1750 baht (roughly $58), and the monthly subscriprion is 1000 baht ($33) – for unlimited internet usage. This sounded great, especially because I’m planning to stay for a couple of months. But… Here comes the obstacle: with a tourist visa you can’t get it. Now what should I do? They said: find a thai friend, and buy the thing in his/her name.

It seems to me that this is the easiest way. You can always find a local friend, or with a little luck, you can just go in the other end of the store and ask the security guy, like I did.

The mobile internet guarantees a continuous internet connection, but the disadvantage of it is that it is slow. It’s good for receiving and sending emails, but a bigger file is going to take up some time. It’s expedient to get to the nearest internet café, if you have something big to send, and for an hourly rate of 20-30 baht ($0,66-1) you can do your job quickly.

A Tuk Tuk is a common transportation in Thailand

A Tuk Tuk is a common transportation in Thailand

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