Talk:Telephone numbering plan

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edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for Telephone numbering plan:

  • Put international call prefix at top of all sections.
  • Undersized Sections with articles that can be used as source material for a summary here.
    • Argentina
    • Austria
    • China (PRC)
    • Colombia
    • Cyprus
  • Country codes with no section either here or in a seperate article
    • Belgium
    • Denmark
    • Macau
    • The Former Yugoslavia (except Serbia/Montenegro)
  • Sections in need of reduction
    • North America. Some information on the US is duplicated within the article or excessive detail.


Japan's telephone numbering plan -- I just submitted a section on it and it's a bit long. Should I make an independent article about it? (Heian-794, 2004-08-30) - 21:00, August 29, 2004 (UTC)

New entry to this page[edit]



Actually, there is a difference in open and closed between dialing plans and numbering plans.

An open numbering plan means that there is no uniformity of number and area code length. Britain still is, to some extent, an open numbering plan.

A closed numbering plan means that there is uniformity. North America and Australia are examples of a closed numbering plan.

An open dialing plan means that the area code is not always required in dialing. North America and Australia are examples of an open dialing plan.

A closed dialing plan means that the entire "national number" must be dialed on all calls, including local calls, throughout the national numbering plan. France would be an example of a closed dialing plan. North America does not yet qualify, as there are still vast areas where the area code does not yet need to be dialed for local calls. For long distance purposes, North Americans must always dial the area code.

Some people in the numbering authorities of the North American Numbering Plan assume that a closed dialing plan will eventually be in place, and would be a prerequisite to the Expansion Plan that they recommend. This plan involves adding two digits between the area code and central office code, using 0s and 1s, thus creating eight digit "local" numbers that begin with a 0 or 1. Since, in their view, 10-digit dialing would already be mandatory, people should not be thinking of their phone number as just seven digits any more, anyway. Nevertheless, in non-overlaid area codes, people will still think of their numbers in the shorter form, and may question or resist a local number that begins with 0 or 1 in quotation, wondering if it is a long distance call and requires four or five additional digits. (e.g. 993-9225 in Dawson City becomes 0993-9225 - but is that actually 0-8670-0993-9225? Or 0-8670-993-9225 or 0-867-993-9225?)

There are superior options to expansion of the North American Numbering Plan that make use of the 80 reserved area codes that have a nine as the middle digit. By using these codes, it is possible to continue (as a flash cut from 7 to 8 digit) local dialing without area code in non-overlaid areas. New York 212 would become 2912, with no ambiguity since there is no 291 area code. At the same time, a 3 could be added in front of the local number, so 212-646-1234 would become 2912-3646-1234. At the end of permissive dialing, some 720 new area codes would become available, including 2812, 2712, 2612, 2512, 2412, 2312, 2212 (since 281, 271, 261, 251, 241, 231 and 221 would no longer exist), and even 2120, 2121, 2122, etc., since 212 would no longer exist. Choosing 3 to add to local numbers makes it an easy slogan to promote the change: 9 plus 3 equals 12 digit numbers.

Until the assignment of 440, 441 and 443 as area codes in the mid-1990s, there actually was another option that could have been employed: the prefixing of 4 in front of all existing area codes. (Once the first 4NX area code was assigned, this option was lost.) The slogan at the time could have been, for the new 12-digit numbers, add a 4 to make the area code four digits, and an 8 to make the local number eight digits. (2005-May-6) - 23:14, May 6, 2005 (UTC)


There may be some inconsistences in Spanish prefixes:

  • I don't know any 800 xxx xxx toll-free phone
  • About 80x xxx xxx, shared-cost, I only know 803, 806 and 807, which are at premium rates.
  • I think most of old 90x prefixes still apply:
 900 xxx xxx Freephone
 901 xxx xxx Shared cost
 902 xxx xxx Not sure about the name but is used by companies because of common rates from every region
 905 xxx xxx For massive calling (TV contests,...)

Defining closed and open numbering and dialling plans[edit]

Closed telephone numbering plan redirects to this article, but nowhere in Telephone numbering plan is "closed telephone numbering plan" defined. The second paragraph acknowledges that a distinction is made between open and closed numbering plans, but it does not attempt to explain what they are. The term "closed numbering plan" is then used twice more, without definition. I had to go to the history of the old Closed telephone numbering plan article to find out what it means. (But read on, because it seems as though that old article may have been incorrect.)

In 2011, when the redirect from Closed telephone numbering plan was created, Telephone numbering plan had descriptions of what open and closed numbering plans were. However, these sections were renamed to variable-length and full-number dialling in a revision on March 2013.

That revision introduced the following paragraph with no citation, which contains information that, if correct, I believe needs to be reintroduced into the article:

"A variety of dial plans may exist within a numbering plans, whether it is closed or open. A closed numbering plan, such as found in North America, features fixed-length area codes and local numbers. An open numbering plan features variance in length of area code or local number, or both."

I am not sufficiently au fait with this topic to know which version is correct, but clearly some explicit definition needs to be made in this article for each of the four terms:

  • open numbering plan,
  • closed numbering plan,
  • open dialling plan,
  • and closed dialling plan. (talk) 17:58, 9 April 2019 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 15 May 2019[edit]

Per the North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA), the 510 area code in the region that includes Oakland, California, will have the overlay code 341 applied to it on June 22, 2019 [1]. Therefore, the reference to Oakland and the 510 area code in this article as an example of syntax for a single area code dialing area is now erroneous and obsolete.

The following text should be stricken from the article: To call a number in Oakland, California, which has only one area code, the dialing procedure varies: • xxx xxxx — local or long-distance within area code 510, no area code required) • 1 510 xxx xxxx — local or long-distance outside of 510 but within the U.S., Canada, and other countries in the NANP. 1 is the long-distance trunk code. • +1 510 xxx xxxx — outside the NANP. 1 is the country code for Canada and the USA.

…and replaced with: To call a number in Reno, Nevada, which has only one area code, 775, the dialing procedure varies: • xxx xxxx — local or long-distance within area code 775, no area code required • 1 775 xxx xxxx — local or long-distance outside of 775 but within the U.S., Canada, and other countries in the NANP. 1 is the long-distance trunk code. • +1 775 xxx xxxx — outside the NANP. 1 is the country code for Canada and the USA.

(It doesn't necessarily have to be Reno, Nevada, but Reno is one of many places that could accurately be identified as a single area code location in the United States.) Piperactive (talk) 08:18, 15 May 2019 (UTC)

Thanks for the update info. I chose to remove the entry entirely, as there is already too much 'how-to' stuff in the article, which is not a goal of WP. Kbrose (talk) 18:16, 15 May 2019 (UTC)