New Virginia area code will alleviate “540″ number shortage

Published: Oct. 25, 2021 at 10:34 AM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ/SCC Release) - A new area code will begin soon in Virginia in areas currently served by the “540″ code, because the inventory of available phone numbers with “540″ as the area code is expected to run out, according to the State Corporation Commission (SCC).

Starting November 13, 2021, 10-digit dialing will begin for Virginians living in the 540 area code region. SCC says this is the first step in a June 2020 relief plan to phase in the new “826″ area code. During the next six months, local calls can be made with seven or ten digits, and all calls that are local will continue to be local even though you dial 10 digits.

The 540 area code encompasses the northwestern and southwestern portions of Virginia; some of the larger cities include Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Culpeper, Fredericksburg, Front Royal, Harrisonburg, Radford, Roanoke, Salem, Staunton, Waynesboro and Winchester.

Because of available numbers running out, the SCC approved the addition of the “826″ code to the same geographic region served by “540.” Beginning June 14, 2022, new telephone lines or services can be assigned numbers using the new 826 area code.

SCC says residents and businesses that already have phone numbers will get to keep them. No one’s 540 phone number will change.

SCC has this statement:

And what do you need to do? Very little. Just start practicing dialing phone numbers using all 10 digits because, beginning May 14, 2022, local calls made in the 540 area code won’t be connected if just 7 digits are dialed. You must use 10 digits (3-digit area code + the 7-digit telephone number) as of next May 14. One thing people can do to prepare for the switch is to update their cell phone contacts now, so that phone numbers they call regularly already will have the area code attached.

Click here for more information.

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