When you’re working remotely, taking conference calls, parsing through code, and conducting research, the last thing you want is to have your work hindered by slow internet speeds. Unfortunately, if you’re considering working remotely there, Greece’s internet speed is rather lacklustre, especially when it comes to fixed broadband speeds.

As Greece is emerging as a major hotspot for digital nomads, you might wonder how they square this with mediocre internet connectivity. Not to worry, there are workarounds. This article takes a closer look at the state of Greece’s internet speed and how to find the fastest connections to make your work more efficient.

The Internet Landscape in Greece: An Overview

Greece’s digital landscape is one of contrasts. On one hand, the country has made strides in certain urban areas and has achieved impressive speeds in parts of Athens with the best-case scenarios seeing 200Mbps for both download and upload. However, the internet infrastructure can be inconsistent, particularly in less urbanized areas.

As of April 2023, the median mobile internet speed in Greece ranks 33rd globally, boasting a download speed of 67.80 Mbps and an upload speed of 13.41 Mbps, with a latency of 22 ms. This data came from Speedtest.

The fixed broadband sector, on the other hand, presents a slightly different picture. Ranked 95th worldwide, Greece’s fixed broadband speed delivers a median download speed of 44.25 Mbps and an upload speed of 7.73 Mbps, with an improved latency of 13 ms.

You should understand that these figures represent the median speeds, and they may fluctuate significantly. Particularly outside of major cities, where the speed and stability of the internet can be unpredictable, with the very best connections reaching only 100 Mbps download and upload speeds of about 10 MBPS. In some cases, particularly on the Greek islands, internet speeds can fall as low as 10 Mbps for downloads and 2 Mbps for uploads.

Greece Internet Speed
Greece Internet Speed

How Greece’s Internet Speed Compares with Other Digital Nomad Hubs

Greece’s global rank in mobile and fixed broadband internet speed, 33rd and 95th respectively, put it in an interesting position when compared with other popular digital nomad destinations. Thailand and Spain, two of the countries most frequented by digital nomads, provide median download speeds of 39 Mbps and 35 Mbps on mobile, and 204 Mbps and 175 Mbps on fixed broadband respectively. Meanwhile, the USA, which is the origin of many digital nomads, offers median download speeds of 80 Mbps on mobile and 202 Mbps on fixed broadband.

All three countries rank in or near the top 10 globally for fixed broadband speeds.

Such comparisons indicate that while Greece’s mobile internet speed is competitive, its fixed broadband lags behind most of the developed world. In fact, it’s usually ranked dead last in Europe. 

If you frequently perform tasks that require high bandwidth, such as video conferencing or streaming, you might struggle. Therefore, while Greece offers a myriad of attractions for digital nomads, its average internet speed, particularly in terms of fixed broadband, is a factor that remote workers should carefully consider.

Impact of Internet Speed on Remote Work in Greece

Let’s take a closer look at the impact of internet speeds on remote workers.

While the average internet speed in Greece might seem adequate at first glance, certain factors could significantly influence the online experience of remote workers and digital nomads. Instabilities such as frequent disconnects, ping drops, and lags are common, particularly outside major cities. These issues can disrupt work activities, create communication barriers, and ultimately, decrease productivity.

Activities requiring high-speed internet and consistent connectivity, such as streaming, video conferencing, and large file transfers, could prove challenging in Greece. For instance, workers who rely on video calls for collaboration and communication may face difficulties due to inconsistent speeds. Similarly, those working with large files might encounter long upload and download times, adding unnecessary delays to their workflow.

The worst part is, in more remote regions like the Greek islands, maintaining even a slow but stable internet connection can be challenging. You might encounter snail-like speeds and frequent disconnects. In these cases, using a mobile hotspot or investing in a SIM card from a reliable provider like Cosmote or Vodafone could be a lifesaver. It’s also worth considering rearranging your work schedule to accommodate potential connectivity issues, if possible.

Internet Speed At Accommodations in Greece

Accommodation choices like hotels, apartments, and Airbnb rentals may not offer optimal internet speeds. Often, the internet providers in these places are not tailored for heavy professional usage, and the connection might not support high bandwidth tasks effectively.

If reliable internet is a necessity for your work, consider setting up a dedicated line with a local provider, like Inalan, which is known to offer faster speeds. However, this might not be a practical option for short-term stays or for those constantly on the move.

Internet Speed At Cafes in Greece

Cafes, popular go-to workspaces for many digital nomads, often provide broadband connections. However, the speed and quality can vary, and shared connections might lead to decreased performance during peak times. Imagine 30 people in the cafe, all streaming Instagram videos or doing actual work, they’re going to interfere with your internet connection. In those cases, I highly recommend hotspotting off your mobile device instead.

Internet Speed At Coworking Spaces in Greece

There are a few coworking spaces in Greece, and while not as widespread as in some other countries, these spaces are typically more attuned to the needs of remote workers, providing more reliable and faster internet connections.

6 Internet Speed Tips for Remote Work in Greece

So, Greece’s internet is pretty awful, what are you going to do about it?

Here are some practical tips to optimize your internet connection in Greece, ensuring a smoother remote work experience.

1. Consult With Neighbours and Providers

Before choosing a location to stay and work, make sure to check the internet quality. Speak with people who live in the area to get their recommendations and consult local providers to get an understanding of what to expect.

2. Use a Mobile Hotspot

In areas with weak or unstable broadband, consider using a mobile hotspot. Greek mobile internet speeds can often outperform fixed broadband, particularly in less urbanized areas. For a reliable mobile network connection, consider using a SIM card from Cosmote. As one of Greece’s leading providers, Cosmote offers a wide range of plans at reasonable prices, providing a solid choice for staying connected while in Greece.

I cover which SIM card is the best for mobile hotspots in my article on tourist sim cards in Greece if you want more information.

3. Measure Internet Speed

 Use tools such as Speedtest by Ookla, Fast.com, or Google’s speed test to regularly measure your internet speed. This can help you to understand your connection better and aid in troubleshooting any issues.

4. Use Inalan for Broadband Connections

 If you’re staying for a longer period, consider setting up a dedicated line with Inalan. Known for providing faster speeds, it could be a reliable solution for your broadband needs. I have no personal experience with it myself though.

5. Consider Coworking Spaces

These spaces often offer reliable and fast internet connections, providing a conducive environment for work. However, outside parts of central Athens and Thessaloniki, they are few and far between.

6. Be Prepared for Inconsistencies

Keep in mind that internet speed can vary throughout the day and can be influenced by the number of users, especially on shared connections. Try to use the internet at off-peak times if possible, and potentially deprioritize activities that can be done offline.

The Bottom Line

While the average internet speed in Greece may pose challenges, particularly for tasks requiring high bandwidth, strategic planning and preparation can go a long way in optimizing your online experience. That way, you’ll be able to devote 100% of your attention to work, instead of getting frustrated by a laggy internet connection.

Internet is a vital consideration you need to make when choosing where to work remotely. But there are many other criteria to examine. Therefore, I’ve put together a guide to digital nomadding in Greece that covers everything from housing and food to picking the best destination for a nomadic stay. 

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