.al is the Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Albania. The .al ccTLD has been first introduced in the year 1992.
.AL Registration Info
Registering .al domains has been widened to all natural and legal persons, with no requirements for local presence.
On the contrary, second level domains (.COM.AL, .NET.AL, .ORG.AL or .EDU.AL) still do require a local presence. Host.al offers this service for free.
The owner of the domain, should provide correct contact information and a unique identifier (e.g. business registration for companies, personal identifier for individuals).
.AL domains do not offer IDN support. Domains can be any ASCII and numerical characters from 2 up to 63 letters. The registration period can be from 1 year up to 10 years and the same periods are valid for renewals.A list of registrars where you can register a .al domain:
.AL Registry and Technical Aspects
Initially, the .al nameservers have been hosted at the "Istituto di Scienza e Tecnologie dell�Informazione �A. Faedo�" Pisa, Italy. The central authority responsibility was delegated to INIMA, an Albanian Institute of Applied Mathematics (INIMA is no longer operative).
In 1998, AKEP or the Albanian Electronic and Postal Communication Authority was assigned the task to regulate and serve as central registry for .al domain extensions. A few years later, the primary nameservers for .al domains were transferred at AKEP.
Initially, Albania followed the british model of ccTLDs, blocking second level domains under .al and allowing only third level domains under .com.al, .net.al, .org.al, .edu.al, .mil.al and .gov.al. A few exeptions were made. Some domain names were "grandfathered"; they were uniti.al, tirana.al, soros.al, upt.al and inima.al.
.AL Whois Server
At the moment, the central registry does not run a whois server for .al domains.
AKEP operated through a manual registration process through form requests. In 2012, a new system based on Registry-Registrar was installed and the registration was completely automated. Historically, the price for .al domains has been 75$ for 2 year registrations. In 2010, the domain policy changed and today, most domains can be registered for as low as 12.99€.
The registration is fully automated. Transfers are handled through an EPP code (AUTH_CODE). Activation is done after a one step approval.
Liberalization of .AL Domains
Until the year 2013, the registration of .al domains was restricted to Albanian citizens or companies operating in the territory of Albania. Foreign companies could still register albanian domains through trustee operators or local presence services. As of May 1st, 2013 a full liberalization of .al domains has passed. Registration under third level domains, such as .com.al, .net.al, .edu.al still require a local presence. Registrations under .mil.al and .gov.al are handled directly at AKEP.
.al extensions do not offer IDN support. Domains can be ASCII and numerical characters from 2-63 letters. Albanian domains can be registered for 1-10 years. Same rule applies to renewals.