Ianoia (pronounced EYE-ah-no-ah), officially the Republic of Ianoia is an English-speaking nation in the Indian Ocean nation situated to the southeast of the Kingdom of Günsovölk and Albaland, south of the Direct Democratic Republic of Koana Islands and east of Le Grout. Around 57.4 million people call Ianoia home, and call themselves Ianoians.
The birth of Ianoia is fascinating, with HMS Tyrant – along with four other vessels – leading a voyage carrying English and Scottish pilgrims looking to help claim new lands located in the South Indian Ocean for the British Empire. Led by Captain Herman McCutchen in 1632, the voyage sailed around Africa and then went due east past Le Grout, abandoning Scottish families on what is now Albaland, before anchoring in the Thirlwall Gulf and declaring the large island as Kidderminster Island. The location of the first settlers is situated in McCutchen, the capital city, the most populous area at just over 2 million inhabitants.
Herman McCutchen’s orders were to drop the settlers off before heading back in HMS Tyrant to report on the location and organise further voyages with soldiers, supplies and more in one of the British Empires largest mass immigrations. However, McCutchen never returned choosing to stay with the settlers, along with all remaining crew. The British Royal Navy, unaware of the “successful” voyage, presumed all lives lost and the voyage a failure, decreeing that no ship shall return to the Indian Ocean until they overturned the ban for Captain Cook’s voyage that discovered Australia in 1768.
There are 1,494 villages, towns and cities spread throughout Ianoia’s 49 islands of which 13 are uninhabited with the vast majority of the population situated on the south portion of main island due to active volcanoes running along a major fault line.
Whilst Koanian, German, Dutch and French is spoken at various fluency levels by around 15% of the population, English is the official language which was only done legally in 1692.
Ianoia has numerous cities scattered throughout the country, with the majority located in the “Dirty Squeeze” of Longdon. Here are just eight of the most famous:
- Blenkinsopp – Well-known for its liberal community, hilly terrain, Victorian architecture, scenic beauty, summer fog, and great ethnic and cultural diversity. The current downtown skyline, with practically no tall buildings due to the city’s height restriction ordinance, is dominated by church steeples.
- Burstwick – Today, as a tourist attraction, is often shadowed by cities such as McCutchen or Ivychurch, even though it has a long history as a rich and powerful trade centre. However, with its multitude of hidden gems behind cozy alleyways, excellent cuisine (notably fish and seafood), renovated old port, beautiful sights (including one of Southern Union’s biggest aquariums), and its position on the coast as a large cruise-ship port makes it an enticing place which is gradually becoming more included in the touristic market.
- Byfleet – Situated next to Bucknell Bay, providing the scenic home of many of Ianoia’s national arts and cultural attractions. Many use Byfleet as a base for day trips around the region for activities such as hiking, camping and fishing. The city banned cargo ships from entering Bucknell Bay to preserve the wildlife and scenery.
- Ilford – The capital city of the province of Marpleshire, Ilford is small and intimate (population 250,000) compared to larger mainland Ianoian cities, reflecting the small size of the state. The metropolitan area stretches north and south along Billingside Bay below the towering Eavestone Mountain to the east. Notable for being one of the windiest Ianoian cities, it has a mild temperate oceanic climate, with four distinct seasons.
- Ivychurch – With its fine, aristocratic atmosphere, old world sophisticated shops, grand boulevards and palaces, leafy parks, and several art galleries, Ivychurch is an increasingly popular tourist resort. Just an hour’s drive from the capital city and its status recently as World Seafood Capital have promoted tourists to visit this beautiful and underestimated Ianoian city, which has a longstanding cultural and artistic history.
- McCutchen – The capital and the country’s largest city. With excellent pubs, fine architecture and good shopping, McCutchen is a very popular tourist destination and is the fourth most visited Southern Union city. Its vibrancy, nightlife and tourist attractions are renowned and it is the most popular entry point for international visitors to Ianoia. The centre is, however, relatively small and can be navigated by foot, with most of the population living in suburbs.
- Oldstead – Known as Boston-of-the-South in recent times for it’s heavy Irish immigration, is one of the most historic, wealthy and influential cities in Ianoia. Its plethora of museums, historical sights, educational institutions, restaurants and wealth of live performances, all explain why the city gets 16.3 million visitors a year, making it one of the top 3 most popular tourist locations in the country each year.
- Ulcombe – The “Green City” and, according to some, the best place to live in Ianoia. Home to large vineyards and many breweries, Ulcombe has a decent size port and is the economic hub of Castlewright.
- Warnborough – A dynamic northern city known for its handsome centre, active cultural life, with a very large student population. This city has a strong industrial background, but, after some difficult years, it is now known throughout Ianoia for its handsome city centre and its very active cultural life.
- Billingside Bay – Primary location of the Ianoian Trout species of fish, the best place for fishing tours and house-boat getaways.
- In Peninsula – Rugged coastline with plenty of beaches and hiking opportunities just two hours from Ulcombe.
- Korall Sea Reef – A coral formation, one of the largest in the world, located in Springhtorpe Bay near Rainow. It is home to a spectacular array of marine life and offers awesome diving opportunities.
- Laysters Lake – Ianoia’s deepest lake by volume and a remarkable destination for all who love the outdoors. Includes many thermal baths.
- Limpley Island – A beautiful island with quiet beaches and one of the most popular hikes in the country. Has many picturesque villages for the perfect weekend getaway.
- Marple National Park – Depending on changing volcanic activity, there may be opportunities for viewing active lava flows from varying distances in the two active volcanoes of Auburn and Penmorfa Mountains. Food and water is available only at the entrance to the park.
- Pleshy Island – Widely referred to as ‘Ianoia in Miniature’, Pleshy Island offers visitors a compact and easily accessible island that mimics the geology of the main island, with a sparsely populated and mountainous northern half and a flatter, more populous southern half.
- Slipton Prison – Located on Chitlington Island, this former prison town used to house 5,000 inmates with guards and their families before it closed officially in 1987. The population has decreased to just a few thousand but all buildings are heritage-listed and the tours go into the dark history of the prison.
- Warm Ring – A popular loop of pretty historical cities and towns forming a ring around Kellingley Lake which includes Warmfield. Outdoor thermal baths are located all around this area and offer some of the best mud-baths in the country.
- Waldridge Waterfall – A 150-meter tall waterfall that runs right through the middle of the town of Waldridge. The perfect place to have dinner in one of the many fine-dining restaurants situated on either side. Located just an hour and a half out of Warmingham.
Unlike most countries, Ianoia has no border controls for visitors from all other countries and can visit for up to 90 days with the exception that their passport is valid for at least 6 months.
Citizens of all Southern Union member states as well as the United Kingdom and Ireland have no border controls and can stay for as long as they wish.
Visiting Ianoia for employment or study is a different story, however. A visa is required prior to your arrival which can be obtained at any Ianoian Embassy or online. This process can take upwards of 8 months and requires thorough background and criminal checks as well as proof of finances to support yourself for two months. The actual value of money you need varies from location to location within the country so be sure to obtain the information prior to applying as any rejection prevents you from re-applying for a visa for 3 years from the date of the rejection!
Customs & Quarantine
Distributed on the plane or ship, The Customs Declaration form asks you to declare whether you are bringing with you a variety of heavily regulated items, such as more than IOA$10,000 in cash. In addition, you must list on the back side all goods that you are permanently bringing into Ianoia and leaving there (such as foreign gifts for Ianoia-based friends and family). All international airports and ports now have electronic kiosks in Ianoia that have replaced the physical Customs Declaration form should you not be issued one prior to arriving.
After you are admitted into Ianoia and retrieve your bags from the baggage claim, you will proceed to the secondary inspection area (the customs checkpoint), regardless of whether your journey terminates at this location or if you are transiting onward via another flight or cruise. Hand your customs declaration to the officer. Most of the time, the officer will point you to the exit and that will be it.
Sometimes, the officer may ask you a few routine questions and then let you go. The officer may refer you to an adjacent X-ray machine to have your bags inspected or may refer you for a manual hand search of your bags. Any search more intrusive than a bag search is rare and is usually indicated only if some sort of probable cause has been established through questioning or during the bag search to suggest suspicious activity.
Note that you can’t bring meat or raw fruit or vegetables, but you may bring cooked non-meat packaged foods, such as bread, cookies, and other baked goods.
Most visitors from outside the Southern Union arrive in Ianoia by plane. While many cities have an international airport, there are limited flights to most of them. Most travellers enter the country at either McCutchen, Ulcombe or Ilford.
All major cities in Ianoia service most locations within the Southern Union, with only McCutchen and Ilford having daily flights to and from Australia, New Zealand and Asia.
Direct flight options to and from India, Europe and the Middle East service the majority of major airports in the country, although COVID-19 has seen a reduction in direct services to places such as Bedlington and Edith in particular.
Most cruise liners arrive and depart from Ivychurch before departing and traversing around the country with McCutchen or Burstwick being the final stop.
Entering Ianoia by sea other than on a registered cruise ship may be difficult. The most common entry points for private boats are Inwardleigh on the west coast, Gedding, and the Eastern coastal city of Edith.
The width of Ianoia can make travel by anything other than plane an exercise in frustration. Public transport in Ianoia outside of major cities is not commonly used, developed, nor reliable as in many European and Asian countries. Due to cheap fuel prices, endless available parking spaces, cheap auto insurance, very cheap car prices and large distances to travel, Ianoians prefer to drive their own cars rather than opt for public transport. This can cause major arterial highways to be congested especially during peak holiday seasons.
The quickest and often the most convenient way of long-distance intercity travel in Ianoia is by plane. Coast-to-coast travel takes about five hours from east to west, and four hours from west to east (varying due to winds), compared to the three or four days necessary for land transportation. Most cities in Ianoia are served by just one airport; depending on where you are starting, it may be cheaper to drive to a nearby large city and fly or, conversely, to fly to a large city near your destination and rent a car.
Nation carrier I-Wings competes for business on major routes with budget airline Swift Airways, and travellers willing to book two or more weeks in advance can get bargains. However most smaller destinations are served by only one of the carriers, and prices to destinations outside of the big cities can be very expensive.
Also note that during any major volcanic activity in the country, air travel can grind to a halt due to ash in the sky and for this reason both carriers have extensive “credit only” refunds. Always have a second option should such an event occur so you aren’t stranded, especially when making onward connections.
Visitors from countries with well-developed long distance rail systems such as Europe and Japan may be surprised by the lack of high-speed, inter-city rail services in Ianoia. Despite completing the InterCity Corridor Rail Project (ICCRP, or as the locals call it, the I-Crap!) was an attempt to connect major cities with a fast high-speed rail service. However, budget blowouts turned it into a white elephant meaning travel between major cities will not only be faster by air, but often cheaper as well.
Train travel between cities outside of the High Speed Rail is, however, more scenic, and tourists are likely to see more of Ianoia travelling by train than they would otherwise see, as well as cutting down on their carbon footprint. It is also often a cost effective way of getting to regional towns and cities, which don’t have the frequent flights – if any at all – found between the capital cities.
Despite the poor reputation and considerably slower high speed trains compared to neighbouring Koana Islands, the privately-run High Speed Rail can take as long to reach the destination as it would to drive, without the hassle of navigating traffic. Longer trips such as Stratford-Ilford to Blenkinsopp can take around 36 hours but provides sleeper cars in various configurations with televisions and microwaves in each cabin.
Bus travel in Ianoia is cheap and convenient, although the distances involved can be daunting. Big Whale Buses has the largest bus route network that services nearly all major towns and cities, although frequency can vary wildly depending on your intended destination.
If travelling to the next town or city over, a bus is a great alternative to the meandering, slower train services, but some bus trips can take over a dozen hours and the seating can be make the trip unbearable.
Ianoia has a generally well-maintained system of roads and highways, and cars are a commonly used method of transport. Most of the state capitals are linked to each other by good quality highways. Although most parts are dual carriageway, many sections are one lane each way especially the further you travel away from the state of Longdon. Major regional areas have sealed (paved) dual-lane roads, but isolated areas may have poorly maintained dirt roads or even tracks, especially in the north of Sharnbrook and Marpleshire where volcanic activity can regularly change the landscape and break up sealed roads. Distances and speeds are specified in kilometres and fuel is sold by the litre. The vast majority of highways are toll roads, but you only have to pay at either a toll booth on the on-ramp or by using an automatic scanner.
Ianoia drives on the left. Generally, overseas licenses are valid for driving in Ianoia for three months after arrival. If the licence is not in English an International Driving Permit (IDP) is required in addition to your licence. Licensing regulations and road rules vary slightly from state to state.
It is almost impossible to predict your travel time just by knowing the distance. Seek local advice for the best route, and how much time to allow. Averaging 100km/h or more is possible on some relatively minor highways when they are straight and there are few towns. On other national highways that traverse mountain ranges and travel through small towns, even averaging 60km/h can be a challenge.
It is illegal to hitchhike in Ianoia despite most travellers believing the contrary after the 1962 cult film Gary’s Way, showing the main character traversing the countryside of Ianoia by hitchhiking.
If forced to hitchhike due to an emergency you may find a motorist willing to take you to the nearest town to obtain help and Police will generally give you a caution for doing so but nothing further. You are best advised to use one of the many Help Phones located every two kilometres on all highways and wait by the side of the road for assistance to avoid any nasty fines.
Expect everyone you interact with in Ianoia to be able to speak English, whether it is their first language or not. Visitors who do not speak basic English will find communicating with Ianoians difficult, and should do some advance planning. There are some tour companies who specialise in offering package deals for tours complete with guides who speak particular languages.
Koanian is spoken with varying levels in most major cities from McCutchen to Edith in the east due to the proximity of Koana Islands, but speaking English first is considered good manners. German, Dutch and French is taught in schools in the west of Ianoia, with German being the preferred dialect. Anyone under the age of 30 should understand basic German enough to assist you.
You may hear may slang terms for hello and goodbye during your stay which can be confusing for non-English speakers. Saying hello is often replaced with a greeting “noise” that sounds like a cross between “Hey” and “Oi” but with a silent H. Goodbye can sometimes be heard as a “Syar” with emphasis on the “r” at the end as an abbreviated way to say “See ya”.
Although some visitors may probably visit McCutchen at some point, it is well worth getting out of the capital to get a real taste of the country and it’s important to not forget the diversity of activities one can find in barely 50 miles.
Whether it’s the countryside, coast, historic towns or vibrant cities you are after, there’s something for everyone.
For some of the best countryside, head for the southern islands, perhaps on a weekend getaway or a longer stay.
The coasts are varied and interesting with pretty beaches at places along Yaxham Lake, traditional fishing towns like Angmering or seaside resorts such as Rainow and Kirk. Shoppers looking beyond the capital may want to head to Wildsworth in the north. The north coast of Marpleshire is one of the most beautiful parts of the country with black-sand beaches, volcano hiking and some of the best white-water rafting found anywhere in the world.
If hiking isn’t your thing but you still want to explore the dormant and active volcanoes, geysers and hot springs, consider one of the many helicopter tours departing from most major cities that showcase the untamed parts of the country, usually showing off the more rugged areas such as the cliffs of Startforth and low-flying trips along Gunwalloe Bay.
For the sports fans, baseball is a major professional sport with multiple league divisions allowing travellers on the tightest of budgets to take in a game. The I-league is the top tier of professional baseball and has teams in most major cities that runs from early April to September. If you prefer motorsport, the National Racing Championship is a domestic Go Kart motor-racing competition where 40 Karts race each other at speeds of 250km/h. The season runs for most of the year with races every two weeks at various locations.
Many towns and villages throw fairs, to commemorate the establishment of a town or day of historical importance with rides, games, and other attractions. Mid-size to large cities often draw big ticket concerts, especially in large outdoor amphitheatres. Small towns sometimes host concerts in parks with local or older bands. Music festivals are another activity that may interest the music-lovers, especially the “Red Glow Festival” that only runs at night in the city of Coseley when a volcano erupts – a must-do!
Ianoia’s climate varies considerably depending on the area in the state.
In winter the islands in the south can receive significant snowfalls, with extensive ski fields around Burnham and Bedlington operating between July and September and southern coastal areas including Burstwick range between 9-17ºC in July, the coldest month. However the northern cities of Nempnett and Ilford averages above 20ºC even during mid-winter.
In summer most head for coastal regions, with Ianoia having literally hundreds of clean patrolled beaches and coastal towns. The inland towns can be hot, with many averaging over 30ºC in summer, often peaking above 40ºC. After Christmas until the end of January can be difficult to find any available accommodation near the coast at short notice.
The best time to visit Ianoia depends on your interest. Most activities, transport, restaurants and other facilities operate year-round. For the beach holiday summer December to February is perfect. It can be hot, but if you are at the beach, that is the way you want it. The best months for reliable snowfalls are August to September, although you are always at the whim of Mother Nature on the ski fields. Spring and Autumn are good for walking, and for country driving holiday.
If you are exploring McCutchen and surrounding cities, avoiding the summer period will reduce the crowds and peak accommodation costs. If you are used to the dry heat, then heading inland in the summer period is also an off-peak experience, with few crowds and accommodation hassles.
Ianoia’s unit of currency is the Ianoia Dollar, abbreviated to IOA or just $.
There is no getting around it, Ianoia is not a cheap travel destination, with McCutchen and Longdon State as a whole horrendously costly. On the plus side, many of the museums and parks in Ianoia are admission free for all. If one is on a small budget, for food it is best to check out supermarkets which sell an excellent range of food and essentials for competitive prices. Electronics however are competitively priced due to the competition in this sector, with large chains wanting to get the best share out of what is one of the largest consumer markets in the world. Video games are also far cheaper here than say, Europe, though still more expensive than the United States.
Costs for traveling basics such as transport, accommodation and food will mean that you will spend at the very least $80 per day as a budget traveller. This figure climbs much higher if you want to use taxis, 3 star hotels, eat in restaurants and admission prices to attractions. In reality, if you want a comfortable hotel, a meal in a restaurant, money for transport and a few minor purchases, $200 a day would be a basic budget for McCutchen.
Ianoia is like any major country with tourist-trap gift shops selling cheap tat such as magnets and key chains located in tourist hotspots. If you’re looking for something a bit more personal you’re best advised to look elsewhere and check out shopping centres and malls located away from tourist-heavy areas. Avoid things such as Volcanic Rocks, which whilst genuine are very expensive and can be collected for free legally by by yourself if travelling to any volcanic national park.
Unique items you can buy include artwork from local artists that are usually found in any major art gallery with varying prices. Martletwy also has the “Art Walk” where printed art works are placed on bill-board sized frames on sides of buildings showcasing the best of local artists with QR codes taking you to a website where you can purchase prints or the genuine piece.
The foodie traveller will indulge in Ianoian honey, beef jerky and lamb. Some of the best chocolatiers in the world reside in the country, where you can treat yourself to some Fish Chocolate, which is chocolate made from salty milk!
Grand Veronica is a famous Limoncello brand. Ianoian’s swear they make the best Limoncello in the world, something that all Italians disagree with! If wine is your thing, Brinkburn on Syderstone Island is home to many vineyards that have won multiple awards.
For those wanting to splurge on something more intimate, the renowned Kist Watches was founded in Ianoia and has some of the most expensive timepieces found anywhere in the world. If you see a Kist for sale in any store outside of upmarket department stores or jewellers you can be sure it’ll be fake.
The level of crime in Ianoia is similar to other western countries. Dishonesty offences, such as theft, are by far the most frequent type of crime. Travellers should take simple, sensible precautions such as putting valuables away out of sight or in a secure place and locking doors of vehicles, even in remote locations, as much of this crime is opportunistic in nature.
Violent crime in public places is generally associated with alcohol or illicit drug consumption. Rowdy bars or drunken crowds in city centres, or groups of youths in the suburbs, are best avoided, especially late at night and in the early morning. Ianoia has one of the lowest recorded rates of gun crime in the world.
There are occasional disturbing high profile media reports of tourists being targeted in random violent robberies and/or sexual crimes. These crimes tend to happen in more isolated places, where the chances of the offender being observed by other people are low. The chance of falling victim to such misfortune is still low.
The Ianoia Police, a national body, are generally polite and helpful. They regularly conduct drink-drive blitzes, often setting up screening checkpoints all around an area, including all lanes of motorways. The police do not routinely bear guns. Although all police officers are trained to handle firearms, these are normally openly carried only when the situation requires such weapons, such as an armed offender. Usually, the police carry only batons, offender control pepper spray and tasers.
Natural hazards are by far the most common cause of traveller injuries and deaths encountered in Ianoia.
- Strong earthquakes – Ianoia sits astride a tectonic plate boundary and experiences large numbers (about 14,000/year) of small earthquakes every year, a few (about 200/year) are noticeable and the occasional one causes damage and sometimes loss of life. The last big one causing serious loss of life was on 22 June 2014 between the cities of Ragdale and Nempnett. It was a 6.3 magnitude with a depth of only 5 km, and the death toll was 687.
- Tsunamis – If you are by the sea and experience even a moderate quake, be vigilant that they could issue a tsunami warning on television channel I1 (channel 1) and Today Radio (872kHz) which should be on-air within minutes of the quake. Most tremors and small quakes will merit only a scrolling announcement at the bottom of the screen, as they are not considered particularly newsworthy. Should a serious earthquake occur, tsunami warnings would be displayed as a full scale hazard map. If you are near the water front and experience a major quake evacuate at once to higher ground as a tsunami is likely heading that way. Do not wait for a warning. Every neighbourhood has an evacuation area, most often the local playground. Many schools are set up as temporary shelters. If you are travelling with others, plan to meet there and be aware that portable telephones will likely not work.
- Volcanic eruptions – Ianoia has a number of volcanoes that are classified as active or dormant. Volcanic activity is monitored closely by the government although tourists should not be affected by any eruption if staying near major cities.
There are almost no poisonous or substantially dangerous animals. The Domlian and Kovine are the only two venomous snakes and bites from both species are extremely rare. Serious reactions are uncommon and unlikely to develop in less than three hours, though you should always seek help at your nearest hospital, medical centre, or doctor. The White-tailed and Huntsman spiders can also deliver painful bites but is not considered dangerous to humans. No large mammalian predators are present and no large predatory reptiles.
In Case of Emergency
000 is the number to dial to reach emergency services. Ask for Ambulance, Fire and Rescue Service, Police, Coast Guard or Mountain And Cave Rescue when connected.
The police have fairly wide ranging powers to fine or arrest people who are causing a disturbance, and although they can be heavier-handed in major cities they are generally tolerant. If you are stopped by the police, avoid arguing and be sure to appear respectful. Do not try to reason with them, and above all, do not swear, because although it has been ruled that swearing is not a crime, police will often arrest people who swear at them.
Ianoians are well-mannered people. They are usually reserved with strangers, but once gained acquaintance, especially while drinking, they become very frank and sincere. It’s often easy to mistake Ianoians as rude and unwelcoming given the fact that they value direct communication and that small talk doesn’t come easy. For instance, communicating with strangers in a public place is relatively uncommon. It’s important to bear in mind that Ianoians are generally straightforward and are generally comfortable with being honest. If you say or do anything that’s wrong in a Ianoian person’s opinion, you will be told so in a straightforward manner.
Do not overlook pregnant women, young children or the elderly on public transportation. Always offer your seat to them whenever you see them, otherwise you will be met with open stares or get called out publicly. This is expected out of any visitor to Ianoia. It is considered extremely impolite to pass unwarranted comments or make jokes about someone’s family members in Ianoia. In the Business world, Ianoians often mix their business and personal relationships, since they very much value trust. This is also why Ianoians often like to hire their friends and relatives to work together. Ianoians will surprise you with big anger if you jump in to joke about their family members or give your opinion about their family life without even asking them for it.
Discussing politics can be a minefield and is best avoided. Although it is legal to criticise the government, offering your own opinions as a visitor comes across as judgemental unless you follow Ianoian news closely. Don’t be discouraged to discuss political issues as Ianoians in general are happy to explain, but know the position that being a visitor puts you in. It is worth avoiding any discussions around the history between Ianoia and Albaland; whilst the two countries are allies and have a mutual working partnership today, there is still some hostility and dislike of each other. Being critical of Ianoia’s handling of Albaland in the 1700s is still deeply-rooted in society as a black mark on the country.
When talking about the founding of the country, avoid making jokes or poking fun of Herman McCutchen or the HMS Tyrant. Ianoians are deeply proud of their history and could even get aggressive if accused of being pirates. Furthermore, when discussing natural disasters such as earthquakes or tsunamis, be very respectful in being at all critical to locals about the events. Most Ianoians understand that they live in a very volatile location and criticising how natural disasters are handled could be seen as insulting their way of life.
LGBT visitors will find the locals are tolerant of same-sex couples. Ianoia has recently passed a referendum to legalize same-sex marriage in September 2017.
Under no circumstance should you desecrate or inappropriately use the Ianoian flag. Not only will Ianoins be very offended, but you risk a hefty prison sentence and will almost certainly cop a fine as it is considered a crime.
Ianoia’s international calling code is +290. Payphones are widely available, especially in stations and airports. However, the number of payphones has consistently been reduced after the introduction of mobile phones. Some payphones work with coins only, some with phone cards only and some with both coins and phone cards. Only a limited number of phones (just a few in main airports) directly accept credit cards.
Call costs from pay phones vary greatly depending on when, where, from and where to. Each provider offers an array of complex tariffs and it is near impossible to make reliable cost estimates so be sure to check the costs of all payphones within a location.
Hotels cannot apply a surcharge on calls made from the hotel (as the switchboard service should be already included as a service paid in the room cost), but to be sure check it before you use as it is not heavily scrutinised by the government.
If at all possible wait until you leave Ianoia before posting postcards, greetings cards and other items to friends and family back home. The Ianoian post was notorious for being slow, expensive and unreliable, but things have improved in the past years.
Postboxes are blue and can be found very easily whilst Post Offices can be found in every town and most villages – look for the IPO symbol. When entering the post office you will usually have to take a ticket and wait for your number to appear on the screen when it’s your turn. There will be different tickets for different services and upsetting a postal worker is something best avoided! Most post offices close about 13:00 or 14:00 and only a central post office in most towns will re-open in the late afternoon.