New Florida 448 Area Code, mandatory 10-Digit Dialing in North Florida starts Feb. 20
Starting Feb. 20, all residential and business consumers in North Florida’s 850 area code will need to make calls using the 10-digit telephone number (area code + the 7-digit telephone number). Calls that are now local will continue to be local, even with the 10-digit dialing requirement.
This will impact TDS Telecom (TDS) customers in areas of Quincy, Greensboro, and Gretna, Florida.
The Florida Public Service Commission ordered an area code overlay for the 850 Area Code on Nov. 5, 2019. An overlay does not require customers to change their existing area code, but it does ensure a continuing supply of telephone numbers. The new 448 area code will be added and share the same region as the existing 850 Area Code. Beginning March 20, 2021, new telephone lines or services may be assigned numbers using the new 448 area code.
Changes for customers include:
· Customers will need to dial 10-digits (area code + 7-digit telephone number) for every local call.
· For the new dialing procedures, customers may need to reprogram or upgrade your equipment if you use specialized equipment like a PBX, electronic telephone sets, auto-dial systems, or multi-line systems.
· Some automatically dialed calls may require reprogramming to include the new dialing procedure. These calls may include life safety systems, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, speed dialers, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, and similar functions.
· Check your websites, business stationery, advertising materials, personal checks, contact information and your ID tags to ensure the area code is included.
· If you seek new phone service after March 20, you may be assigned a phone number with the 448 area code.
What will remain the same:
· Your current telephone number, including current area code, will not change.
· You will continue to dial 1 + area code + telephone number for all long-distance calls.
· What is a local call now will remain a local call.
· The price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services will not change due to the overlay.
· You can still dial just three digits to reach 911. You can also dial three digits to reach 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711, and 811, where available.
Please remember to identify your telephone number as a 10-digit number (Area Code + 7-digit telephone number), and include the area code when giving the number to friends, family, business associates and customers, etc.
Important safety and security equipment, such as medical alert devices, and alarm and security systems must be programmed to use 10-digit dialing. Many systems operate on 10-digit dialing by default but some older equipment may still use 7 digits. Please contact your medical alert or security provider if you are not sure whether your equipment needs to be reprogrammed to accommodate the upcoming change to 10-digit local dialing. Any needed reprogramming of alarm and home security equipment should be done before Feb. 20, 2021.
Remember that all local calls must be programmed using 10-digits and you need to add ‘1’ for all long-distance calls.
If you have any questions regarding any information provided in this notice, call 1-888-CALL-TDS or visit www.tdstelecom.com.
You can visit the Florida Public Service Commission website at http://www.psc.state.fl.us/Home/.