Telephone numbers in Hong Kong

Last updated
Hong Kong telephone numbers
Hong Kong Location.svg
Location of Hong Kong
Location
Country Hong Kong
Continent Asia
Regulator Communications Authority
Type Closed
Typical format+852 XXXX XXXX (Mobile phone and fixed-line numbers)
Access codes
Country calling code +852
International call prefix 001
Trunk prefix none

Telephone numbers in Hong Kong are mostly eight-digit. Fixed land line numbers start with 2 or 3, mobile (cellular) phone numbers with 5, 6, 7 or 9, pager numbers with 7 and forwarding service with 8. Since the end of 1989, there have been no area codes within Hong Kong.

Contents

The telephone number for emergency services – Police, Fire Service and Ambulance – is 999 for all telephone lines. These numbers can also be used for mobile and other users:

Some special numbers are three- to five-digit. Some premium rate services, for example for games and adult contents, are 11-digit. Numbers beginning with '1' are usually reserved for carrier/operator services. These services are provided by the individual telephone carrier. In general, these numbers can be used across all carriers:

The international call prefix varies depending on IDD provider, however 001 works on all phone lines and uses the IDD service provided by the same carrier as the telephone line that 001 call is dialed from. During the years of telephone monopoly, the International call prefix was 106 (through 1980s) and then 001. Calls to Macau and mainland China are international, as are calls to Taiwan. Calls from Hong Kong to other parts of China include that regions separate country code:

Present numbering scheme and format

The present structure and format of telephone numbers in Hong Kong according to the Hong Kong Telecom Service Numbering Scheme, is as follows (the first digits of the telephone number is used as follows): [1]

Telephone exchanges in Hong Kong

Historical numbering scheme and area codes

1970s

In the 1970s, area codes were assigned with the following pattern:

There was no standard trunk prefix like '0' – only the area code and phone number were dialed when calling from one area code to another. Thus the Kowloon number xxx-xxx would have been dialed as follows:

1980s

In the mid-1980s, 6-digit numbers starting with '0' became 7-digit numbers starting with '71', making way for subsequent change of the New Territories prefix from '12' to '0'.

Fixed-line phone numbers were either six- or seven-digit in the 1980s. Area codes were assigned with the following patterns.

Cellular phone numbers are all eight-digit starting with '9'.

Easy Dialling Day

On 30 December 1989, area codes were abolished. [3] Six-digit numbers in the New Territories were changed to replace the initial 8 with 46, followed by five digits; area codes for six-digit numbers in the other areas became part of subscriber's numbers. Area codes for seven-digit numbers were simply removed. Some six-digit numbers had the first digit changed to two digits to make a seven-digit number.

1990s

On January 1, 1995, [4] a '2' was prefixed to all fixed line (land line) numbers which are now eight-digit. A '7' was prefixed to existing pager service numbers.

Since 2000s

Before the introduction of portable fixed line numbers, numbers were assigned in a pattern akin to districts. For example, in addition to the existing 3, 5 and 0 prefixes, a 4 prefix was used for Tuen Mun and Yuen Long, 6 for Tai Po and Sha Tin, and 8 for Hong Kong Island.

Numbers starting with '3' were introduced when '2' for fixed lines started running out. Cell phone numbers remain eight-digit. The number '6' started to be used when numbers started with '9' were running out. In May 2008, cellular phone numbers with '5' as the beginning were also introduced.

Due to numerous phone scams spoofing local telephone numbers, calls started from outside Hong Kong using a local number now show the Hong Kong prefix +852 before the phone numbers in Caller ID. [5]

See also

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References

  1. The Numbering Plan for Telecommunications Services in Hong Kong SAR / 香港電訊服務 號碼計劃 (PDF), Communications Authority , retrieved 3 December 2016
  2. Internet PPS - 關於我們
  3. 1989 - Hong Kong Telephone (Easy Dialling Day)
  4. Daryanani, Renu. Hong Kong 1995: A review of 1994. Hong Kong: Government Printing Department. p. 360. ISBN   9789620201547.
  5. Office of the Communications Authority. "Insertion of "+" Sign in the Calling Number Display to Help Identify Possible Telephone Scams Originated from Outside Hong Kong". www.ofca.gov.hk. Archived from the original on 2021-03-24. Retrieved 2021-03-24.