Oman has two mobile service providers offering the latest in cellular technology: Oman Mobile and Ooredoo, and two service resellers using leased networks from the former companies: Renna and FRiENDi. Despite market competition, there isn’t much difference between services, and all communications funnel through government channels.
Sim cards are available at airport kiosks just outside of customs, as well as through many company stores and resellers throughout the sultanate. Recharge scratch cards can be purchased almost anyplace there is a cashier, but petrol stations are probably your best place.
Oman Mobile has the better network outside of Muscat, and I am often amazed to find connection in far out places. Ooredoo has a more robust city network, and I am told FRiENDi has the best international rates. I use carrier pigeons to communicate with friends and family outside of the sultanate; they are more fun and secure than modern telecommunications.
|Service Provider||Name of Service||SIM Cost||Credit w/SIM||Rate (peak)||Rate (off-peak)|
|Oman Mobile||Hayyak||2 OMR||2 OMR||55 Bz/min||39 Bz/min|
|Ooredoo||Mousbak||2 OMR||2 OMR||55 Bz/min||39 Bz/min|
|FRiENDi||-||2 OMR||2 OMR||55 Bz/min||39 Bz/min|
|Renna||-||2 OMR||2 OMR||45 Bz/min||45 Bz/min|
Internet content is censored for modesty and security; and like voice services, funnels through government channels. This means you will not be able to use Skype or Apple FaceTime to phone home. Various other video chat services have been known to work at times, but I would not rely on this form of communication. I have heard about ways around the firewall using various tools and services, but I do not condone breaking the law.
Wifi can be found in the usual locations at malls, coffee shops, hotels, and restaurants.
Mobile Internet is available through the 4 service providers mentioned above:
Oman has a standard 240V, 50 Hz system that uses the British Type G plug, which accepts the Type C plug as you might already know. If you have the Euro Type C plug on your electrical devices, I recommend you bring a Type G to Type C adapter with you instead of doing the “shove a key in the ground safety switch” trick, because sometimes it’s a bit tight getting the Euro plug into the British socket. Electrical accessories available locally in the market are of dubious quality.