During my short two days trip to Yerevan in Armenia, I decided I will need a local SIM card to make calls and browse internet.
There are three mobile phone operators currently in Armenia: Viva Cell MTS, Orange and Beeline. Orange and Beeline only offer 2G and 3G services. Viva Cell MTS offers both 2G and 3G as well as 4G services. All three networks are widely modern and reliable with shops located in major towns and cities where one can purchase a sim card or get assistance if needed. Most unlocked mobile phones are able to be used on roaming however network charges apply. Orange and Viva Cell MTS are often recommended to tourists due to the variety of tariffs available and the help available in a variety of languages.
I was really surprised being informed by taxi driver who took us to Yerevan, that you can have a Pre-Paid SIM card bought at VivaCell-MTS office near Marriott Hotel (Republic square) in centre of Yerevan - 24/7.
I followed taxi drivers advice and went to VivaCell-MTS office around 6.00 AM. That's right - they are opened 24/7.
I briefly explained my needs for SIM card and internet - and the bartender asked my passport, gave me few papers to sign, and I had my own Armenian SIM card on my phone, with internet activated on it.
The standard price for such a SIM card is 500 Armenian Drams (What equals to less than EUR 1), from which 400 Drams are deposited on your balance. I paid additional some 600 Drams, just to make sure it will be enough for internet browsing.
They do have some special codes, which pressing on your phone could offer you a lower cost for international calls, or to activate internet. I got some special code for cheaper international calls - costing about 90 Drams per minute. Could it be even better? I mean 90 Drams equals to EUR 0.16 or $0.22. I mean it's totally for free.
The Unlimited Internet is for 100 or 200 Drams per day. I mean that's pennies for short time usage of such a great SIM card.
Speaking of internet - it's 3G with 256Kb/s (I guess) - but it worked great in every corner I was in Armenia.
VivaCell-MTS Coverage Map
Since I have built Wi-Fi router in my phone - I'm using laptop to connect to my phone's internet. I handled to work, blog and use social media without any problems.
My personal suggestion - use VivaCell-MTS as your SIM card carrier once in Armenia
MTS (Russian: МТС "Мобильные ТелеСистемы") is the largest mobile operator in Russia and CIS with over 102.4 million subscribers as of 31 December 2009. Having started in the Moscow license zone in 1994, МТS in 1997 received licenses for further areas and began expansion, later entering other countries of the CIS.
The MTS mobile network operates using the GSM standard. It currently holds licences to provide mobile services in 81 out of 83 regions in Russia and the entire territories of Armenia, Ukraine, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan. MTS is currently the biggest mobile operator in Central and Eastern Europe.
Find out more about VivaCell-MTS Armenia