Well, unfortunately... internet is horribly expensive over here!
1) There's no such thing as "unlimited broadband" - nothing similar to Streamyx in Malaysia
- The best internet package that you can probably get is a 20GB + landline (Vodafone) at the cost of NZD$99 per month (that's about MYR200). Any extra usage, you'll have to pay more *gulp*
(C'mon... you must be kidding. 20GB can hardly last for 2 weeks if I were to upload 20 pics, download 2-3 programmes, send a couple of e-mails with attachments!)
2) NZD$2/hour internet cafes
- In most countries, internet cafes probably have a tough time staying in business. But here in Auckland, NZD$2/hour internet cafes are everywhere! - on Queen St, Victoria St, Albert St, Hobson St, Quay St... etc etc
While I have to admit that NZD2/hour is quite a reasonable fee, not many would want to spend that amount maintaining a blog! - especially when Google Adsense doesn't even come close to generating 1/10 the internet fee
3) No free internet
- Umm..., not even at Starbucks or Esquires Coffee. At best, you can get a free 1-hour complimentary wi-fi with every purchase.
So, blogging.. which used to be an income-generating hobby, has become a very pricey indulgence here in NZ
But of course, I'm not about to give up blogging... yet. I'll just find sneaky ways on how to get more airtime, hehe...
i) which involves spending less time on my other favourite hobbies.
- I'm quite a good cook and I do enjoy whipping up a good meal now and then. But nowadays, I'll probably spend more time dining out at wi-fi places than preparing my own food. Thank goodness they do serve good food here - fresh ingredients, no MSG, preservative-free
ii) while walking along Victoria St today, I came across an electronics store that offers free 20-minute internet usage
- The catch is, you would have to provide your e-mail address so that they can spam you ;p
Well, that won't worry me much:) I'll just filter out those spams. Besides, I gave my Dad's e-mail address instead. So, that should keep him busy in the next few days, hehe
iii) Parnell :)
- I have yet to check out Parnell Village - which is about 30 minutes' walk from my place at St Paul St. According to this website http://www.parnell.net.nz/, most cafes/restaurants in Parnell provide free wi-fi. Not sure if it's just the 1-hour voucher or... unlimited wi-fi ;) Will post more info later on
An excerpt from Parnell's website:-
*At launch, Parnell Wireless will provide internet access along Parnell Road between St Stephens Avenue and Heather Street . We'll be expanding the network's reach in the near future."
Long live Parnell! Kia Ora!