How to Dial a Cell Phone in France

Written by siobhan russell
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How to Dial a Cell Phone in France
Dialling a cell phone in France is straightforward. (cell phone isolated on white background image by Nikolay Okhitin from

To dial a cell phone, otherwise known as a mobile, in France you need to know a few simple things before pressing the number keys. France has two major cell phone network providers, Orange and SFR. SFR is owned by Vodafone and Orange is owned by France Télécom. According to France's Autorité de régulation des communications électroniques et des postes (ARCEP), 61.5 million mobiles are in use in France as of December 2009. This means that 95.1 per cent of France's population has a cell phone. The ARCEP reports that 19.3 billion SMS messages are sent each month in France.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Phone number
  • Phone

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  1. 1

    Determine whether the cell phone you are dialling in France is a French phone or an American phone. you need to make this distinction because different dialling methods are used to ensure that the phone call goes through.

  2. 2

    Contact your cell phone provider. Before you make your international call you need to make sure that your phone is switched on for international calls. You should also ask your provider if it has an international calling package; otherwise, calling outside the United States can be very expensive.

  3. 3

    Dial 011. 011 is the international access code used when making an international call from the United States, according to Ohio State University. This code applies to any international call from the United States, not just those to France. You need to use it to call both a French cell phone and a French landline phone.

  4. 4

    Dial 33. 33 or +33 is the international dialling code for France. If you want to call a French cell phone or fixed telephone number in France from outside the country, you must include the international dialling code in front of the number. If the cell phone you are calling is not French, but American, you do not need to to include the international access code or the country code. Just dial the number as if it were located in the United States, namely, area code + number.

  5. 5

    Drop the first 0. All phone numbers in France start with a 0, followed by the area code and then the number. When you are dialling a French cell phone do not dial the first 0, according to the University of Chicago. For example, if the cell number is 061-222-2222 then dial 011-33-61-222-2222. This also applies to land lines in France.

Tips and warnings

  • Consider getting an international calling card that you can use on your cell phone or fixed line phone to make your international call, as this is usually cheaper.

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