Many of us will soon need to dial extra numbers for a lot of phone calls we make.
Starting May 19, calls to numbers with 619 or 858 area codes will require adding that area code – even if you’re calling from a phone with the same area code. For County employees, this will affect outside calls using a landline. You’ll still dial *9 to start. Then 1+area code you’re calling, plus the seven-digit number.
Cellphone calls within 619 or 858 will also require the area code, even if both ends of the call have the same area code.
If you don’t include it, you’re going to hear a recording telling you to hang up and dial again.
WHAT ABOUT CALLING OTHER COUNTY EMPLOYEES AT COUNTY FACILITIES?
For the most part, we’re in luck! In general, we can still reach one another by just calling our seven-digit numbers — without *9 or an area code — if we’re calling from one County landline to another, regardless of the area code.
There are exceptions. The County has smaller and/or more remote buildings and facilities that get phone service by outside providers, not the County phone system. People in those places will have to dial *9 then 1+area code and the seven-digit number.
WHAT ABOUT EMERGENCY NUMBERS?
You’ll still be able to emergency numbers like 911 and 211 directly.
WHAT ABOUT ALL MY CONTACTS? DO I HAVE TO ADD IN THE AREA CODE FOR ALL OF THEM THAT DON’T HAVE ONE NOW?
Yes. At first, we were told this would not affect cellphones, but that’s turning out not to be the case, at least for Verizon. If you have contacts without area codes, add them in.
DO WE HAVE TO ADD IN THE “1” TO THOSE CONTACTS TOO?
No, we don’t recommend adding the “1” within the contacts. In our experience it can inadvertently cause you to make international calls.
WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?
Because there are so many phones these days, the 619 area code will run out of prefixes for new phones in 2019. To handle that problem, the California Public Utility Commission is combining the 619 and 858 area code “boundaries” — and callers inside those boundaries will now have to dial the area code.