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Calling to South Africa

Making Calls while in South Africa

Making Calls while in South Africa

To get started, you need to get the calling basics down.  Remember to make the most of your money—dollars or rand—by buying a South Africa calling card.

General Tips for Calling to South Africa from Abroad

STEP 1: Dial the international access code

STEP 2: Dial South Africa’s country code, 27

STEP 3: Dial the 2-digit area code

STEP 4: Dial the 7-digit local subscriber number

An international operator can help you if you still cannot connect.  Just dial 00.

Instructions for Calling to Cities within South Africa

Always include the international access code (011 in the U.S.) if you are calling South Africa internationally, followed by the country code, area code, and local subscriber number that you are trying to reach.  e.g. For a call to Soweto from Miami, dial 011-27-11-xxx-xxxx.  For all domestic calls within South Africa, long-distance and local, always include a 0 before the area code.  e.g. For a call to Kimberley from Bhisho dial 053-xxx-xxxx. 
Here is a list of major area codes:

CityCity Code 
Cape Town 21 
Durban 31 
Eastern Free State (Bethelehem)58 
East London 43 
Garden Route 44 
Johannesburg 11 
Kimberley 53 
Namaqualand 27 
Northern Free State (Kroonstad)56 
Northern Free State (Welkom)57 
Port Elizabeth 41 
South Coast 39 
Southern Region28 
Tshwane (Pretoria)12 
Vaal Triangle16 
Worcester 23 

Instructions for Calling to Cell Phones in South Africa

If you are calling a cellular phone in South Africa, you need to know cellular prefix.  These 2-digit numbers take the place of area codes.  They are always followed by 7-digit subscriber numbers.  Cellular prefixes used to indicate which cellular provider was used, but with the inception of mobile number portability this is no longer the case.  Many South Africans now choose to keep their numbers if they switch providers.

If you are calling a cell phone long-distance within South Africa, you need to include the preliminary 0 before the cellular prefix.

For international calls to cell phones in South Africa, dial the cellular prefix after the country code: 011-27-82-xxx-xxxx.


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