Making phone calls should be easy. On paper all you do is type in a number and you can talk to almost anybody. As England is such a small country, there are less area code’s than many larger countries, and now that the days of landline phone calling are dwindling, mobiles are becoming the new default for getting in touch with people. On top of this the new innovations of social media and chat platform phone calls using the internet as opposed to phone lines makes staying in contact across the globe even easier. However, guests at the Montcalm At The Brewery London City Hotel and many other hotels and hostels across the city may still get confounded when using landlines, especially in the city. Below are a few tips on phone calling, both international and national, that may come in useful when your data runs out and there’s no WIFI in tow.

London phones

UK Mobile services

Most of us are regular mobile, or “cell phone” users. Many phones from the USA are not GSM integrated and so, if you’re planning on using your mobile in Britain then make sure yours is, or that you have a sim card or spare mobile which uses this. For your GSM Mobile to work in the UK, you will need a 900 MHz and 1800 MHz band phone as well as making sure that you can use 3G. Be wary of roaming charges though, they can rack up costs very quickly if you’re not connected to the internet.

International Directories and Emergency calls

To contact the UK operator is simple; just type in 100 into your handset and you will be able to find assistance. For emergency calls type in 999 from where you will be directed to Fire, Police or Medical services.

London Area codes

London area codes all start with the numbers 020. There are a variety of other parts of the phone number which show which part of London the call is coming from but all start with the same three numbers.

The classic London Phone box

Although the times have passed when phone boxes are a complete necessity, there are still many dotted around the city. To use it insert your phone card or coins into the coin deposit or phone card deposit area and lift the receiver to make your call. If you’ve finished your call and still have money left, you should theoretically have your change returned to you.

Prepaid Calling cards

Prepaid calling cards are available at many newsagents across the city and allow you to set a tab on how much credit you use. Once it has run out, simply top up your card or buy a new one.

International calling

The international code for England is 00. Then add the area code for the country you are calling up. Note that to call with a prepaid calling card you must have at least £2 on your card. Then add the code for the country your calling, followed by the phone number. These are:


USA and Canada: 1

Australia: 61

China: 86

France: 33

Germany: 49

Japan: 81

New Zealand: 64

South Africa: 27

Spain: 34