No matter what type of phone you have, retro or high tech or somewhere in between, you’ll have to practice a new dialing procedure starting tomorrow, if you live in the land of the 818 area code, the San Fernando Valley. On Saturday, April 18, callers in that valley will have to dial a 1 plus the 10 digit number. Sigh, just one more thing to remember.
The reason for the change is the supply of 818 numbers is running out due to high demand. So last April, the California Public Utilities Commission approved a plan to add another prefix to the area –747. The new overlay plan will cover the same geographic area as 818. Also, beginning on May 18, 2009, only 747 numbers will be given out.
Along with Burbank, other cities affected are Agoura, Agoura Hills, Arleta, Calabasas, Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Encino, Glendale, Granada Hills, Hidden Hills, La Cañada Flintridge, Lake View Terrace, Mission Hills, North Hills, North Hollywood, Northridge, Pacoima, Panorama City, Reseda, San Fernando, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Sunland, Sun Valley, Sylmar, Tarzana, Toluca Lake, Topanga, Tujunga, Universal City, Valley Village, Van Nuys, West Hills, Westlake Village, Winnetka, Woodland Hills.
Folks who have 818 numbers can keep them. However, we’re all going to have to make some adjustments around our homes and businesses. All mobile phones, speed dialers, automatic dialing equipment, call forwarding settings, Internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, voicemail services, fax machines and other similar devices will probably have to be reprogrammed.
They’re probably rolling out this dialing change on the weekend to reduce the confusion and delays. Hopefully by Monday, we’ll all be in the swing of it.