The plus (+) sign and international calls

You've probably noticed that many international phone numbers begin with a plus sign. Here's an example: +44 700 000 0000. Some of you may know that 44 is UK's country code, but what does the plus sign in front of the country code mean?

The plus sign vs international exit codes

The sequence required to dial a foreign number is: Exit Code - Country Code - National Subscriber Number. The plus sign before the country code means "add the exit code" of the country you are dialing from. So, using the example above, if you were dialing from the US you would replace the plus sign with 011, while, if dialing from one of the numerous countries using exit code 00, you would instead have 00 44 700 000 0000.

We provide a list of international exit codes (also known as IDD international direct dial or international access codes).

Can I actually dial the plus sign?

With the advancement in technology and growing popularity of cellular phones there is now an even simpler method for dialing international telephone numbers - literally entering the plus sign before the number. Cell phone devices allow this and wireless networks automatically know that this is an international call. In this case you no longer have to enter the international exit code. The big advantage of using the plus sign over the exit code is that the former can be used to dial internationally from all countries.

A recap

If you see an international number that has a plus sign before the country code you either dial + or replace it with your country's exit code. Both methods work.

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