How to call Laos (country code +856)

Calling to Laos

Cambodia’s country code may be mis-labelled:

  • Country code 00 856 (exit code of ’00’ used in many European, Asian, and African nations followed by Laos’ country code of ‘856’).
  • Country code 011 856 (exit code of ‘011’ used in the United States and Canada followed by Cambodia’s country code of ‘856’).

When calling to a mis-labelled country code, remove the exit code from the call sequence and replace it with the exit code of the country the call is dialed from.

… to a mobile (cellular) phone

Use the same call sequence.

Laotian mobile phone numbers occupy area code ‘020’ (’20’ when dialed from outside the country).

When calling a mobile phone user, call to the country where the mobile phone is registered, regardless of where the person being called is currently roaming.

… to a VoIP phone

VoIP phone numbers based in Laos are accessed with the same call sequence as a regular landline phone.

There are no designated VoIP exchanges in Laos.

When calling a VoIP phone user, call to the country where the VoIP phone is registered, regardless of where the person being called is currently roaming.

… to a satellite phone

Laos does not have a country-speicifc satellite phone system.

Most satellite phones operate on their own country code – calls to these satellite phones follow their own call sequence.

… sending a fax

Use the same call sequence.

Calling within Laos (domestic dialing)

‘0’ is used as a trunk prefix when calling within between different area codes in Laos. When calling within the same area code, the trunk prefix ‘0’ and the area code do not need to be dialed.

Local calling (inside the same area code)

To call within the same area code, dial only the local phone number. Do not dial the trunk prefix ‘0’ or the area code.

six digits
local phone number

Long distance calling (between different area codes, or between mobile phones)

To call within different area codes, dial the trunk prefix ‘0’ followed by the area code and local phone number.

0two digitssix digits
trunk prefixarea codelocal phone number

Lao phone numbers explained

Number explanation

Lao phone numbers are eight digits.

The first two digits are an area (geographic) code.

Mobile numbers being with ’20’. They are dialed the same way as all other numbers in Laos.

An example of a Lao phone number

The Dharva Hotel lists its phone number in Vientiane as +856 (21) 222238.

Number explanation
85621222238
country code for Laosarea (geographic) code for Vientianelocal phone number in Vientiane
Local example – calling from another location in Vientiane

When calling within the same area code, only the local phone number is dialed.

222238
local phone number in Vientiane
Long distance example – calling from Pakxe, Laos (on the other side of the country)

When calling between area codes, dial the trunk prefix ‘0’ as well as the destination area code and local phone number.

021222238
trunk prefixarea (geographic) code for Vientianelocal phone number in Vientiane
International example – calling from outside Laos

Dial the exit code of the country the call is dialed from, followed by Laos’ country code of ‘856’, followed by the area code and local phone number.

exit code85621222238
exit code of the country the call is dialed fromcountry code for Laosarea (geographic) code for Vientianelocal phone number in Vientiane

Area codes

… by province

20 Mobile (020-2 ETL, 020-5 Lao Telecom, 020-7 Beeline, 020-9 Unitel)
21 Vientiane Prefecture
23 Vientiane
31 Champasak
36 Attapeu
38 Sekong
34 Salavan
41 Savannakhet
51 Khammouan
54 Bolikhamsai
61 Xiangkhoang
64 Houaphan
71 Louang Prabang
74 Sainyabuli
81 Oudomxay
84 Bokeo
86 Louang Namtha
88 Phongsali
23 Xaisomboun

… by city

Luang Prabang (Louangphrabang) 71
Muang Xay (Oudomxai) 81
Pakse (Pakxe) 31
Phonsavan (Ban Phonsavan)  61
Vientiane (Capital) 23
Savannakhet 41
Thakhek 51
Xam Neua (Xam Nua, Sam Neua) 64

Phone books, directories, and number lookup

  • Lao Yellow Pages – the primary yellow pages business directory for Laos. Includes search and the ability to browse by category.
  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs – foreign affairs Ministry for Laos. On the left hand sidebar there is a dropdown menu for other ministries within the Lao government.
  • … see more

Calling from Laos

’00’ is used as an exit code when dialing an international phone call from Laos.

Administrative and regulatory

Sources and more resources