PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — A new area code is coming soon to Hampton Roads which means there are some changes to how you make local calls.

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Starting April 9, all local calls made in the 757 will not be connected if the full ten-digit phone number (3-digit area code + the 7-digit telephone number) is not dialed. That means the area code will need to be used.

If not, the call will not be connected.

Here are some key things to remember:

  • Your current phone number, including the current area code, will not change.
  • If you seek new phone service on and after May 9, 2022, you may be assigned a phone number with the 948 area code.
  • You will need to dial the area code + telephone number for all local calls, including calls within the same area code.
  • You will continue to dial 1 + area code + telephone number for all long-distance calls.
  • What is a local call now will remain a local call.
  • The price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services will not change due to the overlay.
  • You can still dial just three digits to reach 911. You can also dial three digits to reach 211 and 811, as well as 311 and 511, where available.

The change is ahead of a new area code coming to the ‘757.’ A 948 area code will soon make its first appearance in the area.

In February 2020, the State Corporation Commission (SCC) announced that it approved the new 948 area code for the Hampton Roads region once there are no more phone numbers available with the 757 area code.

The change comes more than two decades after the 757 area code was established as the 804 area code began to run out of numbers.

Since then, the ‘757’ has become a sort of rallying cry and a sense of identity for the community. In fact, the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce previously announced that the area code was selected as part of a new effort to brand and unify the region, which has struggled with an identity.

nine-month research effort, which involved numerous meetings and talking to around 3,000 local residents and hundreds of stakeholders, is where the decision came from, to embrace the “757” moniker that is already taking hold.

“I think it’s crazy it wont be the ‘757’ anymore. I don’t like it,” said Virginia Beach resident Dana Askew in 2020. “I’m so used to the ‘757.’ It’ll be weird seeing a 948 or anything other than 757 for this area.”

Some, however, don’t identify as strongly with the number.

“As long as somebody’s got my number, I got work,” Barry Turner, a Norfolk resident told 10 On Your Side two years ago. “People know how to get in touch with you.”

When the 948 area code makes its appearance, 757 numbers will not be affected.

New phone lines are expected to get the 948 area code when it launches in May 2022.