How do I call UK non-geographic numbers from abroad?

What is a UK non-geographic number?

First of all, let’s look at what a non-geographic number is. Telephone numbers in the UK are split into geographic and non-geographic numbers. Geographic numbers are those beginning 01, 02 and 03 (basically, ‘normal’ numbers) and non-geographic numbers are everything else (e.g. 0842, 0843, 0844, 0845, 0870, 0871, 0872 or 0873).

Why do companies use non-geographic numbers?

Banks, utility companies and others frequently use non-geographic numbers because it allows them to make money on all their incoming calls. The problem is that it results in higher charges for the people calling them (i.e. us the consumers). When phoning from abroad the position is even more complicated since your local telephone provider will either not allow the call to go through or charge a premium to their regular international calling rates.

In summary, non geographic numbers are expensive and often blocked from calling abroad. Fortunately DialAbroad can help

If calls to non-geographic numbers are blocked/more expensive, how can I call them?

Simple – you just have to find the alternative geographic number. All non-geographic numbers link through to geographic numbers. If you look closely at some company web sites you will see that they offer a number to call ‘from abroad’ which you can use, but if they don’t make the number public then you can use a very helpful web site called SAYNOTO0870 to help you find a geographic number to call instead of a non-geographic one:

Make cheap international calls to these numbers

Once you have found the alternative geographic number, make your call like you usually would using DialAbroad.

  1. Purchase credit for the country you are calling from.
  2. Receive your one-time PIN instantly by text message.
  3. Dial our local access number, and when prompted enter the alternative geographic number to call (in full international format, eg. starting 0044 if a UK number).

As ever, if we can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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