Local News

New area code coming to Triangle

Posted June 1, 2011
Updated June 6, 2011

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— Area residents used to dialing seven digits for local calls will soon need to reprogram their phones – and their fingers.

Starting next spring, the Triangle will have a second area code in addition to its longtime 919 code.

The growing number of cellphones – and land lines as the area population increases – is close to exhausting all of the available 919 phone numbers, officials said, so the 984 area code is needed for the Triangle.

"We're running out of numbers in the 919 area code," said Jamie Averette Mitchell, a spokeswoman for CenturyLink, a phone company that has its regional headquarters in Wake Forest. "They're making sure there are sufficient numbers for all land and wireless numbers coming up."

The 919 area code was split in March 1998 to accommodate a shortage of numbers, and the northeastern part of North Carolina was placed in a new 252 area code.

The area code won't be split again, however, and the 984 area code will cover the same region. All existing phone numbers will keep the old 919 code, and numbers that are assigned next year will get the 984 code.

Because the two codes overlap, making a local call will require dialing the area code as well.

A telephone New area code coming to Triangle

"You're going to have to dial 10 digits instead of your normal seven," Mitchell said. "So, if you live in Wake Forest, instead of dialing (the prefix) 554, you'll have to do the 919-554."

Charlotte-area residents have used 10-digit dialing for the past decade, when the 980 area code joined the longtime 704 code.

Triangle resident Cindy Cima said 10-digit dialing is not a big deal, but she says there is a period of adjustment.

"When we were in Maryland and they started doing it, it took a while to get used to it," Cima said. "It was such a pain, but then you get used to it."

Mitchell said the phone companies that serve North Carolina are working together on a plan to add the new area code to their systems.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT Jun 2, 2011

    Since my first cell phone in the 1990's, I've always saved my contacts with ALL 11 digits, regardless of who or where the contact lived. If you save a local number in your contacts, with only 7 digits, you can't use that contact when you are out of town. If you've been doing this, you have nothing that needs to change.

  • anonemoose Jun 2, 2011

    Maybe we need an "637" area code for Non English Speaking. Save the rest of us the trouble of even trying.

  • 007KnightRider Jun 2, 2011

    Those living in 336 will be out of numbers by 2014. The Triad is next!

  • Nobody but Carolina Jun 2, 2011

    "At least the stock photo doesn't have a rotary dialer, lol. Put your mouse over the pic and see what pops up :D
    JoCo Gun Owner
    GOLO member since December 29, 2010
    June 2, 2011 11:08 a.m."

    Nice catch there. lol

  • 37 Jun 2, 2011

    What's odd is when you're used to dialing 10 digits and go to an area where the land-based phone system won't accept it for a local call.

  • Arapaloosa Jun 2, 2011

    At least the stock photo doesn't have a rotary dialer, lol. Put your mouse over the pic and see what pops up :D

  • Arapaloosa Jun 2, 2011

    This really is not a big deal at all. I lived in the Charlotte area for a little while, and it took me about 10 seconds to get used to dialing the extra 3 digits.

  • kikinc Jun 2, 2011

    And also, my comment was tongue in cheek. Some people just don't have a sense of humor, however lame the joke is!

  • 3forme Jun 2, 2011

    Sorry, meant all the land line numbers..

  • ncguy Jun 2, 2011

    reminds me of the seinfeld episode- peopel who had the new area code were snubbed. LOL!