Internet access is great. Whether you have your own computer or not, you won't be offline for long in Cebu, and it won't cost you much to make your cyberspace, either.

Internet Cafes

There are dozens of Internet cafes in Cebu City. Due to intense competition, access is fast and cheap just about everywhere. Rates average at around 30 pesos per hour, though the decent places will run as high as 50 pesos per hour.

Unfortunately for the grown-up traveler, most Internet cafes double as PC game arcades, and tend to be packed with school kids, either playing games on the computers while screaming and yelling at one another, or giggling aloud while chatting on IRS. School kids is in fact the largest source of revenue for the average Internet cafe in Cebu. Some parents use the Internet cafes as baby sitters, dropping their preschool kids off for a few hours while they go off and do other things. As a result, chairs at a few of the Internet cafes are not even capable of seating an adult. Your biggest problem relying on Internet cafes may actually be that cafe after cafe will be fully occupied by a swarm of kids, from early in the morning right until late in the evening.
When you enter an Internet cafe, say "Internet!" which means that you want to use the Internet, rather than play games, and the person in charge will direct you to your computer. When you're done go to the cashier and say "Out!"

A popular Internet cafe with expats and business people from Manila is Earthweb, in the Ayala Center and SM. You can hook your laptop up to their network. Rates are a bit higher than average, and printing is expensive, at P10 per page.

There is another far less well-known Internet cafe with high standards - scroll wheels on the mouse, CD readers on every machine, ergonomic chairs - called JOINUS.NET. This is a Korean-run outfit in the JL Building, next to Bo's Coffee at the corner of Gil Garcia and President Osmena Boulevard. Most of the clientele is Korean, but that shouldn't be a problem; more upsetting may be the fact that JOINUS.NET is the only Internet cafe where smoking is permitted in all areas.

Some other good Internet cafes suited for adults are Netopia (located in Ayala, SM, and the Northgate Mall), Global Village (Ayala), Cyber Java (SM), Business Depot (SM and Raintree Mall), and the elegant Pixel Cyber Cafe (across the entrance to Santo Nino Village).


While it is possible to get a post-paid account for your Internet access, almost all Filipinos prefer prepaid accounts. You can purchase the prepaid card at gas stations and Internet cafes. Just scratch off the username and password, and use these to access the web via a dial-up account. Enclosed with the cards are tiny slips of paper with dialup numbers and setup instructions. The major providers have dialup numbers in all major cities of the Philippines.

Some providers (such as Surenet, Infocom, and Mozcom) allow you to create your account with your own login name, via a form on their web sites, and you can reload this account. This is really convenient; your access will never be rudely interrupted for lack of load.

Most prepaid Internet access providers charge PhP 100 for about 10 hours of access. Some of them - such as Infocom - will let you access the net for free, or at minimal rates, during off-peak hours (00:00 through 07:00).


Both Globelines and PLDT offer DSL to most locations in the urban areas of Mandaue and Cebu City. Lately, Mozcom have been offering broadband via cable, but only to selected subdivisions. If you need serious corporate bandwidth, check out telecom giant BayanTel.

The final option you have is V-Sat, or Internet access via satellite - the Dream satellite system to be exact. It's a bit expensive, though; 70,000 pesos down and 3,500 pesos a month, or 20,000 pesos down and 5,000 pesos a month. Call +63-2-918-8000 for details.

prepaid Internet card
An article about wireless Internet access is available as a separate feature. See Cebu Squeezed: Losing the Wires.
The community of Mac users in Cebu is rather small; I'd venture a bet that you can count Cebuano Mac users on one hand. PC outlets abound, but the two retail stores that used to offer Apple products - CBX and Thinking Tools - have since switched to focusing on Windows-oriented products like everyone else. If you plan on using Internet cafes for Internet access, you'll be using Windows.

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