However, to get there, it took me several weeks and many calls. The full story is below. I will start with the summary first:
- Subscribing to ADSL Internet in Jordan happens in two steps. First step is to connect to the JTC (Jordan Telecom) for 10JD/month and connection fee of 25JD (usually 60JD)
- Step two is to choose an Internet provider to pump internet in the DSL lines. And this is where your options start. (JTC sells internet to the providers in bulk, and they resell it to customers and provide customer support & other services).
- Price wise they are all very similar:
- ~15JD/month for 128Kbps
- ~25JD/month for 512Kbps (5 GB/month bandwidth limit)
- ~40JD/month for 1024Kbps (10 GB/month bandwidth limit)
- But service wise they are not. Here’s a summary of what I found:
- Wanado (5624777): A partner of JTC. They have the largest number of customers, which is their downside. They don’t seem to be scaling up well in terms of customer service & installation times (see my story below).
- Cyberia (5515333 cyberia.jo or 079-640-0724): (my choice) I found their sales and tech support extremely helpful and willing to take the extra mile to excel. (See story below) This is a “Hariri-Group” internet company, extending from Saudi and Lebanon.
- Batelco (5510101): their minimum subscription is 3 months as opposed to 2 months with other providers. However, at 1-year subscription one gets extra 3 months free as opposed to 2 with other providers.
- TEData (5561686 tedata.net.jo): New company on the block. Not well known. However, a friend of mine is very happy with them. They do not impose a monthly bandwidth limit, which is perfect for Torrent-fans out there.
- AccessMe (5699990) & Link (5546666): (same provider) cheaper by about 30%/month & 16 GB limit per month. Don’t know anything else about them.
- Next (?): JTC can’t find their telephone number. No info.
My Story with Jordanian DSL – American Way of Business
When I first got to Jordan, I called Cyberia and Wanado to get internet connection. Cyberia’s salesperson (Omar Qteishat) offered to come to my apartment to sign me up. However, I decided to go with Wanado because all of my friends where using them. I went down to their building in Jabal Amman and signed up. They said that JTC will come in to install the lines first, and then they will turn on the internet within 48 hours of that.
In 4 days JTC came knocking on our door. Within about 2 hours our phone lines where DSL-friendly and ready to go. The JTC guys said that another person form JTC will come to install the DSL modem. And the next day, surely enough, that person did show up and installed the modem. He said that now Wanado will call me to give me the username and password, and most likely they will send somebody over to set up my connection.
The Whirlpool Begins
- Two days passed by and Wanado did not call.
- So I called the Wanado customer service. They said that they cannot find my record, and that most likely JTC did not pass it back yet.
- I called again, they told me to call mohandes Tareq or mohandeseh Israa to check on the application.
- Tareq & Israa’s phones were always busy or did not answer. Their voice mail was full and I couldn’t leave any messages.
- I kept calling, and finally was able to reach mohandes Tareq, who checked quickly and said that my file is not there yet. He said let’s check with your salesperson. Who was your salesperson? Since I don’t keep track I couldn’t remember, but eventually found out that it was Ms. X.
- Ms. X couldn’t remember me at first, and she didn’t find my application in her file. She asked blaming “why didn’t you call after JTC came in!?” (Well, nobody said anything about calling the salesperson again! And customer service kept giving me bogus answers!)
- She remembered that there was a problem with my application. After looking through some papers she found my application and said “ah, yes, your credit card did not go through”! (why she didn’t call me to fix that!? I don’t know)
- I told her to read the credit card number, and surely one of the digits was off. She made a point of blaming me for the error (instead of asking for the right number and just trying the credit card again). I kept cool and let it go, again. She said that within 48 hours I’ll have my internet connection.
- I went to Syria for a week and told my parents to expect a call from Wanado.
- However, I came back to find that Wanado did not call yet. I called again, and got transferred from one customer service to another until I reached Ms. X.
- She asked me – trying to blame me again for the delay “did you call us after JTC installed the Modem? Has it been 48 hours yet?” I said “yes, a week ago”. She said “who did you talk to?” I said “you!!”. She said ah, ok, we’ll try to have somebody over soon. Eid was only2 days away. I really did not want to wait another week for my connection.
- The day before the Eid I called the customer service again, and they said “A technician is scheduled to come over AFTER THE EID to give you the username and password”.
Game Over Wanado, Welcome Cyberia
- At that point I gave up on Wanado. I called Omar Qutaishat from Cyberia, and immediately he offered to come by.
- He came at 11:15 sharp (as he promised) and we signed the papers. He was direct with me and promised to do his best to get me internet connection ASAP but it might not be today. I was happy with his frankness. He also made it clear that if I disconnect in 2 months then Cyberia will disconnect but JTC will keep charging us 10JD a month for a year. Something that Wanado never mentioned.
- Omar also said that the company policy states that they should send an engineer over, but he will see what can be done (calling in with the username & password is much faster).
- At 3pm Mohandeseh Wafaa of Cyberia called to give me username and password and DNS server numbers.
- I called again their Tech Support for help with setting up my Wireless Router (although I did not buy it from them). They were very professional and helpful.
- And at 3:15pm, after 4 hours of calling Omar & Cyberia, I had my internet connection!!!
I called Wanado and cancelled my subscription. They tried to get me the username & password at that moment, but it was too late. They promised that they will send me a check in the mail in 1 week. Second day of Eid I got a call from an engineer at Wanado who wanted to come and setup my connection. I told him I have cancelled already. I’m waiting for the check now.
Apparently, with the aggressive marketing of DSL in Jordan, Wanado, being JTC’s partners, got many new subscribers all at once. Their staff couldn’t scale up services quickly enough and resulted in many unhappy customers (like myself).
Kudo’s to Omar Qutaishat at Cyberia for being truly helpful and going the extra mile to make his customers happy. I truly felt that he was looking after my own interest.
I also want to say that the American way of business “not happy? go to the next-door competitor” is making its way to Amman nicely!