Domestic telephone service is available in almost all population centres (regardless of size) via PSTN or VoIP.
Mobile phones are very common in Bulgaria – many people have two or three phones with different providers. There are three networks (M-tel, Globul and Vivacom), all of which use the GSM/3G/HDSPA standard and will soon introduce LTE (4G) on the country’s territory. M-tel is the oldest and largest provider and as such has almost complete nationwide coverage (97% of the country’s territory), with minor exceptions in the higher parts of the mountains. The other two, Globul and Vivacom, offer better mobile internet speeds due to their low penetration.
Tariffs are the average in the European Union (5-40 eurocents per minute, 7 eurocents/SMS). Prepaid cards and subscriptions are available, and some tariffs have special options for international calls at reduced prices. Prepaid cards must be registered with a valid ID or passport.
Internet access is widespread in Bulgaria, with about 60% of the population having regular access. Broadband internet is available via cable, ADSL, fibre, WiMax and LAN connections. You can also access the internet with your mobile phone, via GPRS or 3G. Speeds are quite fast in the capital – prices are around €10 for 20 Mbit/s, with local access from around 40-100 Mbit/s. Speeds are increasing, with home access for 10 Mbit/s available for around €7.5 per month. Outside Sofia, speeds are much lower, with the fastest being around €7.5 for 10 Mbit/s. Internet cafés are available in most towns and some villages. Computers are not usually available in libraries or public places like train stations, but free wireless access is often available in these public places and at petrol stations. Many pubs and hotels also have free WiFi access. In recent years, wireless access has increased, especially in big cities, but it is still quite limited. Paid WiFi access is also available. The speeds in Bulgaria are surprisingly good! In fact, Bulgaria is among the top 10 countries with the highest wireless internet speeds in the world.