Staff Report

Local residents and businesses have one more month to change the way they make phone calls.

As of June 2, a new dialing procedure will become mandatory in the 805 area code due to the introduction of a new 820 area code “overlay,” which is needed to provide a continuing supply of telephone numbers in the region.

Customers will keep their phone numbers, but most new customers will be assigned the 820 area code, resulting in a mixture of 805 and 820 numbers in the same area.

Once the overlay is added, callers must dial 1+ area code + seven-digit telephone number when making all local calls.

The California Public Utilities Commission is offering these reminders for residents and businesses in the 805 region:

  • Begin now to dial 1 + area code + telephone number for all calls.
  • Reprogram equipment or features that now use 7-digit dialing to dial 1+area code + telephone number, including automatic dialers, life safety systems and medical monitoring devices, speed-dialing, call forwarding, voicemail services, modems for computer or Internet dial-up access, and other similar services or equipment.
  • Advise family, friends, and business contacts with 805 numbers to dial 1 + area code + telephone number for all calls.
  • Ensure that alarms and security door and gate systems are reprogrammed to dial 1 + area code + telephone number.
  • Test telephone equipment, such as a fax machine, to determine if it can dial and receive 1 + area code + telephone number. Questions regarding changes in telephone equipment should be directed to telephone equipment vendors.
  • Update items such as stationery, checks, business cards, advertisements, promotional items, brochures, Internet web pages, personal and pet ID tags, and catalogs to include the area code in the telephone number.

Beginning June 30, consumers requesting new or additional telephone numbers for services may be assigned telephone numbers with either the new 820 area code or the original 805 area code, depending on available telephone number inventory.

Consumers will still be able to dial three digits to reach 911, 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711, and 811.

The 805 area code serves most of San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties and small portions of Monterey and Kern Counties.

For more information, customers should contact their telephone service provider or visit