Fixed-line telephones are available in most apartments and houses rented by expats in and around Luanda. Provision beyond the capital is significantly less, as the country’s infrastructure was never fully developed and has been overtaken by mobile phone usage.
Check with your landlord, or your employer if they are handling your accommodation, to see whether telephone (and Internet) is already set up and included in your bills.
If not, then your best option is to contact Angola Telecom. The information on their website is mostly in Portuguese as the English version is incomplete. Communication will also be in Portuguese so ensure you have a fluent speaker handy it if you are not able. Installation of a new line will cost approximately 180,000 AOA, sometimes denoted as KZ, (US$1,847). A table of service tariffs can be found here.
Other service providers offer landline services or combined Internet-based telephone options, many of which are aimed at business rather than residents. MS Telecom offers products for residential customers, and their website is available in Portuguese and English.
Mobile/cell and satellite phones
Movicel and Unitel stores sell handsets ranging from basic text/voice services, up to more expensive 3G and 4G Internet enabled phones. As mobile Internet grows in Angola it is likely that more people will be making use of these phones and their applications for business and commercial functions.
Both companies offer various plan and prepaid options for customers. To set up a contract you will need to visit the store of the relevant network.
Prepaid (prépago) sim-cards are available from both operators and can be refilled with codes purchased in company stores. Movicel also offers a limited electronic refill facility at Multicaixa ATMs, and machines in some major stores and shopping malls.
Satellite phones are a good alternative to local cell options as they are likely to provide better coverage in remote areas, although there are still limitations. The Iridium system of phones has coverage all over Angola, making it the best option. Their competitor, Thuraya, provides service in the majority of the country, except in the south where coverage can be unreliable and sometimes unavailable (for a map of Thuraya’s range, check here).
Angolan emergency numbers and dialling codes
Emergency services can be reached with the following numbers:
- Police: 113
- Ambulance: 112
- Fire: 115
Telephone numbers in Angola are nine digits long. Calls to Angola from abroad should include the country code +244.
- xxx xxx xxx Calls within Angola
- +244 xxx xxx xxx Calls from outside Angola
These nine digit landline numbers always include the operator code, the area code and the unique number of the person/organisation.
Mobile numbers do not use area codes, and start with the operator’s identifying two digit prefix (e.g. 91-, or 92-).
Area codes for key cities and regions (a full alphabetical list can be found here)
- Benguela - 72
- Cabinda - 31
- Luanda - 2
- Lobito - 722
- Lobango - 612
- Soyo - 321