How to call South Africa (country code +27)

Calling to South Africa

  • A leading ‘0’ is not included in the international call sequence – it is only used in South Africa for domestic long distance calls and domestic calls to a mobile phone.
  • A leading '+' in the phone number means 'dial your country's exit code'.
  • Calling from a mobile phone: dial from on the country where you're currently located.
  • Calling from a VoIP or satellite phone: dial from on the country where the phone is registered.

… to a mobile (cellular) phone or text (sms)

Use the same call sequence.

Mobile phone numbers begin with ‘6’ and ‘7’. They are often listed as ’06’ and ’07’, however the leading ‘0’ is not dialed when called from outside South Africa.

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

Use the same call sequence.

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

South Africa does not have a country-specific 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 South Africa (domestic dialing)

‘0’ is used as a trunk prefix for all calls within South Africa.

Local calling (within the same area code)

To call within South Africa dial the trunk prefix ‘0’, then the two digit area code, then the local phone number.

0two digitsseven digits
trunk prefixarea codelocal phone number

Long distance calling (to a different area code, or from a mobile phone)

To call within South Africa dial the trunk prefix ‘0’, then the two digit area code, then the local phone number.

0two digitsseven digits
trunk prefixarea codelocal phone number

Mobile calling (to a mobile phone)

To call a mobile phone within South Africa dial the trunk prefix ‘0’, then the two digit carrier code, then the local phone number.

0two digitsseven digits
trunk prefixcarrier codelocal phone number

South African phone numbers explained

Number details

South African numbers are nine digits (10 including a leading ‘0’ that is dropped when calling from outside the country).

The first digit (not including a leading ‘0’) designate whether the phone number is a mobile or landline.

The second digit of a landline phone number is part of an area code that designates a geographic part of the country.

Mobile numbers are represented by area codes starting with 6 or 7. The second digit of a mobile phone is part of a carrier code that designates the mobile carrier.

An example of a South African phone number

The Apartheid Museum lists its phone number in Johannesburg as +27 11 309 4700.

Number explanation
2711307 4700
country code for South Africageographic (area) code for Johannesburglocal phone number within Johannesburg
Local example – calling from another location in Johannesburg, South Africa

For all calls within South Africa dial the trunk prefix ‘0’, then the area code, then the local phone number.

011309 4700
long distance trunk prefixarea (geographic) code for Johannesburglocal phone number in Johannesburg
Long distance example – calling from Cape Town, South Africa (on the other side of the country)

For all calls within South Africa dial the trunk prefix ‘0’, then the area code, then the local phone number.

011309 4700
long distance trunk prefixarea (geographic) code for Johannesburglocal phone number in Johannesburg
Mobile phone example – calling from a mobile phone (including a foreign mobile roaming in South Africa)

For all calls within South Africa dial the trunk prefix ‘0’, then the area code, then the local phone number.

011309 4700
long distance trunk prefixarea (geographic) code for Johannesburglocal phone number in Johannesburg
International example – calling from outside South Africa

To call from outside South Africa, dial the exit code of the country the call is dialed from, followed by South Africa’s country code of ’27’, followed by the local phone number.

Do not dial any leading ‘0’ listed in the South African phone number.

exit codesecondone11
exit code for the country the call is dialed fromcountry code for South Africaarea (geographic) code for Johannesburg

Calling from South Africa

’00’ is used as an exit code when dialing an international call from South Africa.

Administrative and regulatory

Sources and more resources