# Saying Numbers: Saying Phone Numbers

Dennis Oliver
Saying Phone Numbers

In the U.S., phone numbers have seven digits,
plus an area code--for example, 818-437-2963
(the area code is 818 and the phone number is
437-2963).

We say the area code as single digits: area code
eight - one - eight.

We usually say the phone number in single digits,
too: four - three - seven, two - nine - six - three.

When 0 is in a phone number, it's pronounced oh:
237-0980 is usually said as two - three - seven,
oh - nine - eight - oh.

In the U.S., 1 is also added if the number is long
distance (in a different city, state, or country).
If I'm in Arizona, for example, and I want to call
503-477-2572 in Oregon, I dial 1 first. If I'm telling
someone that number, I'll say one, five - oh - three,
four - seven - seven, two - five - seven - two.

More Examples:

written:
296-2350

said:
two - nine - six, two - three - five - oh.

written:
520-447-9821

said:
area code five - two - oh, four - four - seven,
nine - eight - two - one
.

written:
1-800-555-1212

said:
one, eight hundred, five - five - five,
one - two - one - two.

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Special Notes:

 1. When writing phone numbers, separate each group of digits with a hyphen ( - ): 520-447-9821. 2. Occasionally, people say the last four digits of phone numbers like two normal two-digit numbers: 447-9821 = four - four - seven, ninety-eight twenty-one. This pattern is not very common, however. 3. The area code is sometimes written inside parentheses ( ) and without a hyphen: (520) 447-9821. 4. Extensions are part of many office phone numbers. To show an extension number, the abbreviations Ex, Ext, or X are often used: 520-447-9821, Ex 213 (or Ext 213 or X 213). If extension numbers have three digits, they're usually said as single-digit numbers: X 517 = extension five - one - seven. If extension numbers have two digits, they're said with single digits or like normal two-digit numbers: extension 15 = extension one - five OR extension fifteen.