This small internet cafe is located in an adjoining room with the Movieland DVD Shop & Restaurant buffet. Movieland briefly had one competitor, but it is again the only internet cafe on Pohnpei. Fifteen Windows-based computer stations are available and cost $2.00 per hour. Computers are Skype-ready.
Considering how small Pohnpei is, its public library is truly an exceptional facility. In addition to a surprisingly diverse catalog of books and periodicals (and a large Children’s Section), the library also has a computer lab and wireless internet. Use of any computer lab station is $2.00 per hour with a limit of one hour per day. Use of wi-fi is $10.00 per month.
The FSM Telecommunications Corporation (FSMTC) headquarters on Main Street has a couple of decrepit computers in the lobby that can be used for internet. The way it works is you buy a prepaid phone card and then enter the card number when you log in. Credit is deducted based on data transfer ($0.08 / megabyte), so the cash goes fast this way. You can use your own laptop in the lobby in the same way or at any of the fourteen hotspots around town: INS Store, Joy Hotel, Oceanview Plaza, Mangrove Bay Hotel/Pohnpei Surf Club, Nihco Marine Park, Pacific Skylite, Pahnasang Heights, Palm Terrace, PCR Hotel, Pohnpei International Airport, Pohnpei Center Cinemas, Seabreeze Hotel, South Park Hotel, and Yvonne’s Hotel. Simply connect to the FSMTC Wireless Network and you will be prompted to register, log in, and enter your pre-paid card number. FSMTC runs a generator during power outages, so the pre-paid wireless continues to work even during black-outs.
Skype is the obvious choice for internet calls from the F.S.M. to other countries. Computer-to-computer calls are free. Computer-to-phone calls have varying rates based on which country you’re calling, but they are always less than the cost of making an actual long-distance phone call. Even cheaper rates are available for monthly subscribers. Current pay-as-you-go computer-to-phone Skype rates are as follows:
Movieland internet cafe is set-up for Skype.
International phone cards purchased outside Micronesia will not work in the FSM, because “800” numbers aren’t free. However, you can make international phone calls from the FSM Telecommunications Corporation headquarters on Main Street or from a cellphone with an FSMTC SIM card. There are regular and off-peak rates*. See below:
For a complete list of international rates, visit www.telecom.fm/phones/international.htm.
Most unlocked GSM mobile phones will work on Pohnpei. Simply purchase a SIM card and a pre-paid FSM TelCard at FSM Telecom headquarters. TelCards are available in $5, $10, and $20 denominations. Local out-going calls are $0.15 per minute. There is no charge for in-coming calls. Out-going SMS texts are $0.06 per text.
Pohnpei has two post offices. The Main Post Office is located on Main Street (Kaselehlie) in Kolonia, while a smaller branch office is found at the National Government complex in Palikir. Under the current agreement with the U.S., the F.S.M.’s postal services are officially part of the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). Pohnpei has a U.S. zip code (96941) and is treated like any U.S. state. Mail sent to and from the U.S. follows USPS domestic mail rates. Parcels sent to the F.S.M. from the U.S., however, do require a customs form. All Pohnpei addresses are post office boxes — there are no residential addresses on the island. A post office box costs $20 per year. You can also accept mail sent to you via general delivery.
The key to getting things to and from Micronesia promptly is to keep packages small (under 20 lbs), so that they can be sent by air; domestic Priority mail flat-rate boxes work the best. Large, heavy parcels are invariably sent by ship and take 8-10 weeks to arrive. Boxes should be carefully prepared and wrapped with clear packing tape. Fragile items should be very well-padded to prevent damage. Express Mail will not get your package to or from the island any faster than Priority. Tracking services aren’t provided beyond Hawaii.