INDIANAPOLIS (Oct. 3, 2016) – In just under two weeks, all consumers in Central Indiana’s 317 telephone area code will be required to use 10 digits to make local telephone calls, which means dialing “317-555-5555” instead of “555-5555.” Saturday, Oct. 15 will mark the end of a 7-month grace period in which local calls could be completed with either 7 or 10 digits.
If you try to complete a local phone call with 7 digits on or after October 15, a recording will prompt you to retry the call with the 317 area code included.
The change to 10-digit dialing is necessary so the new 463 area code can be added to the region, and added in a way that will allow all consumers with existing 317 phone numbers to keep them.
The new area code will “overlay” – or be superimposed over – the entire 317 region which includes Indianapolis and most of its suburbs. Beginning in mid-November, newly assigned telephone numbers may include the new 463 area code. The “overlay” method has been used for all new area code additions in the United States since 2008, including the 812/930 overlay implemented in Southern Indiana last year.
The 317/463 overlay is being implemented to ensure a continuing supply of telephone numbers for the Indianapolis metropolitan area. Industry projections show that without a new area code, all numbering supplies for 317 would be exhausted by the end of this year.
Once 10-digit dialing becomes mandatory on Oct. 15:
- Your telephone number, including current area code, will not change.
- Calls that are local now will still be local. The overlay will not change your rates or local coverage area.
- You will need to dial area code + telephone number (a total of 10 digits) for all local calls in the 317 area.
- You will continue to dial 1 + area code + telephone number (a total of 11 digits) for all long-distance calls.
- You can still dial three digits to reach 911, along with other universal three-digit numbers (211, 411, 711, and 811).
If you are in the 317 area and have not already done so, you are urged to:
- Make sure that all preprogrammed numbers for local calls are set to include the area code. Examples include life safety systems, fax machines, internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, gates, speed dialers, mobile phone contact lists, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, and similar functions.
- Ensure that all services, automatic-dialing equipment, applications, software, and other types of personal and business equipment recognize 463 as a valid area code.
- Include the 317 area code with your 7-digit local number when providing it to others.
- Check any business stationery, advertising materials, personal checks, and personal or pet ID tags and microchips to ensure that the phone number includes the 317 area code.
- Contact your telephone service provider immediately if you encounter any difficulty completing 10-digit local calls.
If you have an alarm system, medical alert device, or other security equipment and are not sure whether it needs to be reprogrammed, contact your service provider immediately. The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) approved the 317/463 overlay in 2015 following a nine-month case that included a lengthy public comment period and five public field hearings throughout the Indianapolis metropolitan area. The telecommunications industry and the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) filed testimony supporting the overlay method, noting it to be the least disruptive option available for adding a new telephone area code.