Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

OTE: On The Exodus

Broken phone

This will be my last post about OTE (On The Exodus) and our shoddy ADSL connection because it’s on the way out of our lives.

We again had no online access this past week like so many weeks before, but OTE continues to make promises it hasn’t kept. These empty promises have cost me precious money and work opportunities I can no longer afford to lose, with no apology, no compensation and absolutely no change in service for the past 6 months we’ve lived in this supposedly “good” area.

I am hopeful this Vodafone wireless solution is more reliable. It’s the same price and a lot more convenient for the same speed, so it’s already gotten my attention…and respect. 😉

In the news

Fixed telephony in Greece hits Stone Age snags” — Kathimerini
Greek watchdog fines OTE

Related posts — The OTE Saga

Just another day in Hellas
OTE: Miracle on Thiseos Street
Communications blackout
The magic of DSL in Greece


  Christopher wrote @ June 6th, 2008 at 04:48


Just to let you know, a friend of mine tried the Vodafone wireless system, and she had the same problems as you have been having with OTE. Maybe you’ll have better luck than her though…

  The Scorpion wrote @ June 6th, 2008 at 08:08

Glad to see you are back in the mix. Keep up the good work. Your friend the Scorpion…

  dubaibilly wrote @ June 6th, 2008 at 10:22

Hi Kat, I for one am glad to see you writing again!

We currently don’t spend long enough on Skopelos to worry about internet connection or landline phones so OTE has not impacted upon our lives yet. We have Vodafone chips which stay current for a year after their last usage so we are OK as we always come back within that time, which means we can keep our Greek mobile numbers.

I am, however, very interested in this Vodafone wireless solution – is this available all over Greece, in the way Vodafone mobile phones are? Or am I misunderstanding how it works?



  graffic wrote @ June 6th, 2008 at 11:13

Hi Kat!

I use Wind 3G for my internet connection. It’s enough for webpages, and some times for youtube. The important thing is that I got it in 1 day. I didn’t have to wait and suffer for a line.

Now I asked for a line, not from OTE, but OTE owns the cables. OTE gave a line in the wrong place, and the internet provider that had to give me access didn’t solve anything (Even working in that provider).

So I’m happy with my 3G connection. At least I can browse the web, chat and send emails 🙂

  Dora wrote @ June 6th, 2008 at 16:24

Happy to see your latest post, and since comments are off, I am leaving one here. However long ago I stumbled onto your site, I have really enjoyed reading your posts. Continue the good writing and insiteful thoughts on your exploits in Greece. The info is valuable to those of us on the outside.

Kali Tihi!

  Lulu wrote @ June 7th, 2008 at 06:58

I’ve read many accounts of blog migrations from one URL to another, and it seems that everyone suffers a big hit but then rebounds fairly quickly. Kat, your site is a great resource and that will tell.

  dubaibilly wrote @ June 7th, 2008 at 07:01

HI Kat,

I’ve just been reading your reply to graffic – your problem sounds VERY similar to one I had at the start of this year. I blogged about it here, here and here. I hope my links are right!

Since I changed my adsl router I have had splendid service with never a single problem! Of course, I’m not saying that is what your problem is, but your description of it sounds identical to what I was suffering!

As you have now changed your ISP, it probably doesn’t help at all, but if things start to go haywire again … you never know.



  Kat wrote @ June 7th, 2008 at 11:34

C – Nice to see you here again. I’m in a wait-and-see mode, but any Internet is better than no Internet, which is what we contend with on a once monthly basis for stretches of 1-2 weeks with no viable explanation or solution.

The S – Thanks 🙂

DB – True, if you have a Greek cell phone with a card (karta), you can keep the number for up to a year as long as you charge it within 1 year of last use. It’s convenient because you can send/receive sms anywhere in the world without worrying about the stupid syndesi system where you cannot roam abroad unless you pay a huge deposit. And they often have deals (like now) where you can charge it and get double the credit.

The wireless 3G system works anywhere in Greece there is a Vodafone signal (same as cell phones) and requires only that you have the ‘stick’ in your USB hub, which hypothetically gets a speed up to 7.2 mbps. Plug and go. Not the fastest, but neither is our stable phone…if/when it’s working, that is. In theory, our OTE DSL was supposed to provide us with 54 mbps, but our monitors say it never reached that speed once (not even close).

G – I think what’s important to understand is that I got the line in 3 days (see “OTE: Miracle on Thiseos Street“), but the line doesn’t work consistently. We are not waiting for it. We’ve had it, and the signal is showing as being connected and strong, but nothing is working. Our connection at OTE has looked into it, sent out technicians at no charge, and done everything she could, but it hasn’t been fixed. I cannot go on like this, and I find it unacceptable to pay money for something I do not have 25%-50% of the time. I’ve been more than patient and tolerant.

It’s not a firewall, it’s not our wires (they were inspected thoroughly, and we paid to have that done), it’s not a driver, the modem, the cables, the hub, the wireless device, and it’s not because service isn’t available. It simply doesn’t work sometimes, and we never know when that is or for how long it lasts. Sometimes it works on only my laptop, sometimes only on the desktop.

What you say is true. We got the wireless in one day, in fact it only took about 5 minutes to sign up, get our stuff and leave. We both have long-standing relationships with Vodafone, with mine going on 11 years.

D – What a nice thing to say! With all of these issues of late (plagiarism, DSL issues, site migration, heaps of work), there have been a lot of people from unexpected corners offering assistance and kind words about this site being a valuable resource, and it’s been encouraging.

L – Thank you, I want to believe that also. There was a mild panic yesterday when I came back online and found my stats had halved, though the number of visitors was relatively unchanged. I’ve still got a long way to go with metamorphosis I have planned. Siga siga.

DB – Ah yes, I remember your issues now. I told you what you faced would get you ready to encounter OTE when you’re here full time. 😉

It’s not our router, as we’ve changed, inspected, verified and swapped every possibility. It’s one of those times you just look to the horizon and say, “Ellada” and accept it or move on. We’ve decided to move on after 6 months of frustration. In another country, I would have dumped it long ago, but monopolies and cartels have a funny way of making you feel trapped, when you realize a competitor here is no better…or worse.

  Cheryl wrote @ June 8th, 2008 at 11:00

Kat, I’m glad to see that you’re writing again. You’ve been missed. Keep up the great work!

I hope that your internet access improves as I know how frustrating it can be to have it go down all of the time. I’ll cross my fingers for you!

  Paul wrote @ August 14th, 2010 at 02:09

Greece is crap.

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