Ten-digit dialing starts Saturday

Published on August 22, 2014

Residential phone books no longer automatically available in several cities

Beginning on Saturday, Aug. 23, residents of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island will be required to dial 10 digits — the area code followed by the seven-digit phone number — for all local calls.

Local calls dialed with only seven digits will be interrupted by a recorded network announcement before being connected.

Glen Brown, spokesperson for the Canadian Numbering Administrator, which is the organization responsible for the administration of Canada’s telephone numbers, says 10-digit dialing affects all residents and businesses served by area code 902.

He said it’s important that everyone takes the time to reprogram their systems and communications equipment prior to Aug. 23, in order to avoid any inconveniences that may be caused by the change.


He said if people have not already done so, residents and businesses are urged to add the 902 area code to programmed numbers in all of their communications devices and equipment, including wireline and wireless phones, auto dialers, computers, alarm systems and lifeline equipment.

They should also include their 10-digit phone numbers on stationery, cheques, advertising, and update their employee, client, supplier, and other databases, said Brown.

Starting Aug. 23, local calls dialed with seven digits may be interrupted by a network message.

The message reminds callers that they must dial 10 digits when making local calls.

Calls will continue to go through until Nov. 16, 2014, after which time seven-digit local calls will not be completed.

Brown says that starting Nov. 30, 2014, the new 782 area code will be available in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island using the overlay method.

This means the 782 area code will coexist with the current 902 area code and will cover the same geographic area.

Customers with telephone numbers that include the 902 area code will retain their numbers.

Numbers with the new 782 area code will only be assigned to customers when the existing inventory of 902 numbers is depleted.

Introducing a new area code does not affect local calling areas in any way.

Key dates

- Aug. 23: The transition to 10-digit local dialing starts. If the area code is not dialed, the caller will generally hear a reminder message before the call is completed.

- Nov. 16: 10-digit dialing will be mandatory. If the 10-digit number is not dialed, the call will not be completed.

- Nov. 30: The new area code 782 will be gradually introduced in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

- The Telecommunications Alliance, whose members include Bell Aliant, Bell Canada, Rogers and TELUS, was formed to spearhead this public awareness initiative. Interested parties can find more information at www.dial10.ca