How do mobile phones and the Internet work in Donetsk and Luhansk

Ukrainian girls on dating sites often manipulate saying their phone reception or Internet is bad. Especially in Donetsk and Luhansk. Here’s detailed information about the real situation with connection in the territories not controlled by Ukraine.

mobile connection in Luhansk and Donetsk

First, the issue of how mobile communication works in ORDLO (Russian-occupied territories of Ukraine). Militants seized the Kyivstar (number one Ukrainian telecom operator) office in Donetsk back in 2015. The base stations were turned off, and the equipment was simply “pressed” and their mobile operators were launched on its base: “Phoenix” in Donetsk and “Lugakom” in Luhansk. Lifecell equipment was also taken away a year later. And for all the time of the war in Donbas, they somehow function on stolen and outdated equipment. And the quality of communication of the same “Phoenix” constantly reminds of this.         

These mobile operators “do not call” to any country in the world, except for Russia. And on the free part of the Donetsk region – too.

Mobile connection in Donetsk

The only telecom operator you can find on the territory controlled by the DNR group is Phoenix. Its services are actively imposed in all budgetary institutions. Its “popularity”, which the separatists like to mention, is associated with the forced purchase of cellular tariff packages.

The mobile operator, controlled by the DPR terrorists, works intermittently, sometimes and the network disappears altogether, and the quality of communication is lame. A possible cause of problems is the installation of new equipment for the 4G network.

“The quality depends on what part of the city you live in. It’s fine in the city center and badly on the outskirts”. “Sometimes the connection is bad, but I think it depends on where you are” – this is what locals say about the reception in Donetsk.

In reality, the local population is not enthusiastic about the services of “Phoenix”, since it doesn’t allow you to call any of the operators in the territory controlled by Ukraine.

In addition, there is a high risk of recording of conversations by the MGB (analog of the Soviet Ministry of State Security). When Phoenix was launched, many Donetsk residents openly said that it was a project of local special services. To buy a SIM card, you must present the original passport and identification code.

Residents of ORDLO call to the territory controlled by Kyiv exclusively through Vodafone, and the city network is separated from the Ukrainian one.

Prices for cellular communication in Donetsk and Luhansk

· Phoenix’ package called “Narodnyi” (People’s) costs less than a dollar (1 USD);

· People’s Internet package from Phoenix worth 1,2 USD per month.

What you get for this money? 120 free minutes per month to landline numbers in the part of the Donetsk region not controlled by Kyiv; unlimited free calls and 300 free SMS within the network and to Lugakom numbers (this means calling Luhansk); calls to landline numbers to the part of the Luhansk region not controlled by Kyiv –0.006 USD per minute. 1 GB of mobile Internet is available (you can additionally connect up to 50 GB). Calls to Russia cost from 0.04 USD per minute.

However, when connecting to a separatist provider, users will not be able to access a number of Ukrainian sites, having found the inscription “access is prohibited by the “order” of the “Ministry of Information” of the “DPR”.

Mobile connection in Luhansk

The Lugacom operator, controlled by the LPR terrorists, also has a People’s tariff. It costs 0.6 USD per month. The subscriber has 3000 free minutes and 300 SMS within the network. Calling a landline number in the part of the Luhansk region not controlled by Kyiv costs 0.02 USD per minute. International (i.e. to Russia) calls cost 0.08 USD per minute. LPR sells mobile Internet too, it is worth 0.006 USD per megabyte.

Lugacom costs half as much, but the LPR group provides less favorable conditions for subscribers. 

How do people make calls?

The Oplot TV channel, controlled by Russian hybrid forces, once asked Donetsk residents if the quality of communication would improve after the price increase.

 «It will probably improve. Although it still works well. Here, I have phones and in my family – we do not complain, it works well», – responds an elder lady.

 “I think it will probably get better. The call quality is bad, to be honest. In many places far from the city, it doesn’t work,” a young Phoenix user shares his experience.

 “It would be nice if they would improve communication after the price increase. My friends and I have had problems more than once when it was simply impossible to get through,” another one answers.

“I won’t switch to the Phoenix Internet” You are very weak … If you want to earn, the Internet should fly, ”says the user of the social network.

In another post, a user compares the conditions in Donetsk and in Russia: “So there is really no connection. I just bought an MTS package in Rostov unlimited internet tariff, 600 minutes and 600 SMS per month for 300 rubles, so that’s what I call speeeeeeeeed.”

Phoenix works well: both communication and the Internet are available throughout the city, and the package will last for a long time. It is also convenient to call Russia: the connection is good and cheap, 0.08 USD/minute. «But in areas where there is no Vodafone, but only Phoenix (near military bases, sea coast), the problem is to register for Viber or WhatsApp. If you re-register the Vodafone number to a new Phoenix number, the technical support service changes it without problems. If you register a Phoenix number from scratch, technical support blocks, you receive messages from your contacts in Viber and WhatsApp, but you cannot answer. Technical support writes about suspicious activities from your number.

The only Ukrainian mobile operator that still works in the occupation, albeit with constant failures, is Vodafone. The network works in those places where there is still working equipment, but they cannot guarantee uninterrupted communication, since they do not have physical access to this equipment in the occupation.

Cable Internet in Donetsk, according to a resident of the city, is generally stable, but recently there have been occasional disconnections, which was not observed before.

Getting a bit sick of all these stories about broken phone and no Internet? Verify your Ukrainian girlfriend today. Comprehensive solution: check her ID and passport, pictures, messages, phone number and address. Contact us now!