Making Phone Calls in Mexico Gets Easier on August 3rd

Source: iStockphoto

When we first moved to Mexico, we ended up getting a home phone with unlimited international calls as part of our Internet package. We quickly figured out how to dial our friends and family members back home, but we had trouble dialing many numbers within Mexico.

The reason is that the rules change when you’re dialing a cell number from a landline. You have to actually add a prefix to the number, and the prefix changes depending on whether it’s a local cell number or not. Crazy, huh?

So, if I’m dialing a local cell number from my home phone, I add the prefix 044 (e.g. 044-555-555-5555). If it’s the cell number from another part of Mexico, I have to use 045 instead: (e.g 045-555-555-5555).

The problem is that I have to know in advance if the number I’m calling is for a cellphone or a landline. Many small businesses in Mexico use a cell number as their primary business number.

But, all of that confusion comes to an end next month.

Mexico Adopts 10 Digit Calling

On August 3, 2019, Mexico gets rid of all of the prefixes (01, 045, 044) and goes to standard 10 digit numbers: 3 digit area code + 7 digit phone number. Life couldn’t be easier!

By the way, I didn’t mention that 01 earlier, but that was used for long distance.

Here’s a short video in Spanish explaining the change.

You folks who are calling Mexican numbers from foreign numbers will still have to add some digits (i.e. country code).

Let’s Wrap This Up

Special thanks to one of our readers, Bob, for bringing this change to our attention and suggesting that we do an article on it.

Well, that’s enough blog talk for today. It’s a gorgeous morning here in the Riviera Maya and the beach is calling our names. Hasta luego.

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About the Author

Qroo Paul
Paul Kurtzweil (Q-Roo Paul) was a deputy sheriff in Florida for 25 years before retiring at the rank of lieutenant in 2015. He and his wife moved to Mexico looking to maximize their retirement income. They later started a blog called Two Expats Mexico ( to share their experiences as well as information about the logistical and legal aspects of retiring south of the border.

19 Comments on "Making Phone Calls in Mexico Gets Easier on August 3rd"

  1. Roberta Strand | July 4, 2019 at 9:19 am |

    Thank God. It has been so frustrating calling numbers since I moved to Ajijic, sometimes I don’t even bother.

  2. Muchas gracias for posting this. So, when calling any MX number using a US or Canadian cell phone, does one press +52 then the area code, then phone number?

    • Yes, starting August 3rd — at least that’s how they claim it will work…lol.

  3. Thank you for clarifying. This always confuses me. One question. If someone is dialing from a US cell to a Mexico cell, they still dial the +52 and the 1? Or just the +52? Gracias!

    • Starting August 3rd, it should just be +52

      • Steve Granger | July 4, 2019 at 11:00 am |

        Interesting…and good to know!

        I’m curious….do you also maintain a US number as well, in addition to your (presumably) Mexican number?

        I’ve been travelling internationally for business more often recently, and have found that using Google Voice for calls to/from the US works great when I’m out of the country. As long as you use data for those calls, the calls are free.

        Just curious if you need to do this down there as well, or if there just isn’t a need for it for a typical retiree. I was planning to continue to do this after I retire, but was wondering if it was even needed.

  4. So it will change to…?

    Calling any Mexican phone number from a Mexican phone number
    Press the area code then the phone number. Do not dial 1, 01, 044 or 045

    Calling any Mexican phone number from a US or Canadian CELL phone
    Press +52, then the area code, then the phone number: +52 AreaCode PhoneNumber

    Calling any Mexican phone number from a US or Canadian land line phone
    Press 011 52, then the area code, then the phone number: 011 52 AreaCode PhoneNumber

    Calling abroad from a Mexican phone number
    Press 00, then the country code, area code, and phone number. To call a US or Canadian phone number, press 00 1 AreaCode PhoneNumber


    • Yes, as I understand it. I guess I should still do an article about calling Mexico from foreign numbers. Okay, it’s back on the topic list…lol.

  5. Slim in Mexico | July 4, 2019 at 10:59 am |

    I think there’s a good chance if you are in Mexico using your US/Canada cell and connected through Telcel, you can just dial the 10 digit Mexican number. I know when I call my neighbor here on their US numbers it’s the 001 prefix because the call is going through Telcel, but for them to call me it’s just my 10 digit Telcel number. Guess we’ll just have to see how it all works out. Gotta be easier either way!

  6. Great news, thanks for sharing, Paul! 🙂

  7. Cavanaugh o’Leary | July 7, 2019 at 2:06 pm |

    That does make it easier. However, as usual, the ad agency that put it together used very light skinned actors. The majority of the target audience has much darker complexions. It is not unlike when the US only had white people in commercials. The ad agencies need to quit their mentality that the audience only wants to see light skinned people in ads!

  8. Glad to hear of this change! Thanks for the info, Paul!

  9. Can you make this video in English also for us who aren’t yet fluent in Spanish? Thank you.

    • This wasn’t my video, it was made by the Mexican government. The only thing you have to know is that we have a 10 digit phone numbers throughout Mexico.

Comments are closed.