Starting July 29, 2012, residents of Manitoba will be required to dial 10 digits – the area code followed by the seven-digit phone number – for all local calls. The introduction of 10-digit dialing is the result of a decision by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) and will pave the way for the addition of a new area code, 431, in November 2012, as the 204 area code reaches capacity. 

Businesses using communications services have steps to take.  To accommodate 10-digit dialing, various telephone functions and communications equipment will need to be reprogrammed to add the 204 area code to numbers stored in autodialing devices. 

To ensure a successful transition, we recommend that people start reprogramming their equipment to comply with 10-digit local dialing as of December 1, 2011. This is the date by which telecommunications companies operating in Manitoba will be able to support 10-digit dialed calls. All equipment updates should be completed before 10-digit local dialing comes into effect on July 29, 2012. 

The Telecommunications Alliance – whose members include MTS Allstream, Rogers, TELUS, Bell, and Westman Communications Group – was formed to spearhead a public information campaign to ensure a seamless transition to this new local dialing method. 

For more information on how to get prepared, please consult the information document available on the Telecommunications Alliance website here.