Whether you run a business or have family overseas, you’ll need to get into the habit of calling the USA from the UK every now and then. Of course, dialing a US number is a little more complicated than phoning a local friend. But that doesn’t mean it’s hard to do!
Here’s how to call people across the pond on landlines or mobile phones. Additionally, we’ll take a closer look at comparing time zones, average rates, and low-cost solutions for regular international calling.
Calling USA cellphones from your UK phone service
Calling US numbers on a mobile phone is very similar to calling landlines. In either case, let’s parse it out step by step:
1. Get your exit code
You remember this: 00!
2. Punch in the country code
Dialing 1 is all you need.
3. Dial the area code
The area code you’ll use depends on the US region you’re trying to call. A couple of popular ones include:
- 404: Atlanta
- 312: Chicago
- 702: Las Vegas
- 310: Los Angeles
- 305: Miami
- 212: New York City
- 415: San Francisco
- 202: Washington DC
4. Type in the mobile number
All that’s left is for you to put in the 10-digit number (think 456-7890 again).
And voila! All done.
Looking to instead call the UK from the United States? Check our guide on how to call the UK from the US.
Call any US landline from your UK phone using these four steps
To reach the US from your UK landline, you’ll need to key in the exit code, dial the country code, punch in the area code, and fill in their phone number. Let’s take a closer look at each step.
1. Find your exit code
In order to call any number outside of the UK, you’ll need to punch in the designated exit code: 00. So far so good!
2. Punch in the country code
The entire US uses the same country code: 1. Easy peasy!
3. Access the area code
A US area code is a three-digit number that directs your call to the correct general area. The bad news: there are 291 area codes in the United States. The good news? Your contact should supply this info for you.
4. Dial in the phone number
At last, the easiest part! Punch in the rest of the phone numbers, and you’re all set to call a landline in the US
Here’s an example of what your final number should look like: 00 (exit code) – 1 (country code) 123 (area code) 456-9780 (phone number).
How to factor in time zone differences calling the USA from the UK
In the US, there are nine major time zone differences. For the purposes of this chart, we’ll assume you’re using Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) in London and Northern Ireland.
- Atlantic Standard Time (AST): People in this time zone are 4 hours behind you. 12 noon in London is 8 AM in AST.
- Eastern Standard Time (EST): Including big cities such as New York, EST is 5 hours behind London time. 12 noon GMT is 7 AM EST.
- Central Standard Time (CST): Cities in this time zone are a full six hours behind you (think 6 AM during your noon lunch).
- Mountain Standard Time (MST): With a seven-hour difference, this time zone can be a little tricky to reach until late afternoon. Your 12 PM is equal to their 5 AM.
- Pacific Standard Time (PST): If you’re trying to reach someone in California, understand that their days are a full eight hours behind you. 12 noon is 4 AM.
- Alaskan Standard Time (AKST): In this time zone, you’ll be 9 hours ahead of Juneau, AK. Calling at 12 noon is the same as 3 AM their time.
- Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time (HST): You guessed it: Hawaii is 10 hours behind the UK. 12 noon is 2 AM, which is a bit early for any meetings.
- Samoa Standard Time (UTC-11): 11 hours behind the UK, those in Samoa probably won’t want your 12-noon phone call at 1 AM their time.
- Chamorro Standard Time: This time zone contains the US territories of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. We know what you were thinking, and no: the answer is not 12 hours behind. In fact, Chamorro is actually 10 hours ahead of the UK! Your 12-noon call is their 10 PM.
As you can see, calling the US from the UK is a little more complicated than it looks. Add in factors like daylight savings time, and you’ve got a real pickle on your hands.
Use a tool like Time and Date to get a more accurate idea of the best time to call the USA from the UK.
How much does it cost to call the US from the UK?
The short and long answer is: it depends.
International calls have varying rates depending on your service provider and calling plan. Even sending a text message could cost you, depending on the US number in question.
If you’re using a mobile provider or UK landline phone, chances are you’ll need to dish out funds for an access charge. This option could be included with your current plan, or be an add-on you can purchase later. In either case, expect to spend a few dollars per minute while on the line, costing a few hundred dollars per month.
If you want more accurate info about how much calling the US from the UK will cost, reach out to your mobile number provider. Want a better way to reach the US? OpenPhone’s got you covered.
How to call the USA from the UK without paying international fees
If you frequently call customers and clients in the USA, you may want to think about using a VoIP like OpenPhone. Through OpenPhone, you can make unlimited free calls and texts to the US and Canada by getting a local US or Canadian number. Plus you can access your new number from your mobile device, giving you two different numbers on the same phone.
- Sign up for OpenPhone and select a US number, local Canadian number, or toll-free number. During the signup process, you’ll be asked to verify your account with your existing phone number.
Occasionally due to compatibility issues with your current number you may not be able to verify your number automatically. However, we can help you get started if that’s the case. Just reach out to our support team by filling out this form.
- Access OpenPhone using our web, mobile, or desktop app.
- Call or text anyone in the US or Canada free (all you need is an internet connection for WiFi calling).
With OpenPhone, users can also make cheap international calls from the United Kingdom in minutes, reaching clients and customers around the rest of the world. Reach the clients you need exactly when your schedules allow, and check out our rates page for a breakdown by the country you want to reach.
OpenPhone is a powerful tool for reaching customers all over the US – and our clients agree. Check out what happy customers have to say about us on G2!
“There is no doubt that this is one of the best services of its kind. The sound quality is great and the iOS app is easy to use.” – Daniel H.
“I figured it shouldn’t be too difficult to get a US business phone number and start messaging/calling clients but none of the options on the market made that possible, never mind affordable. Fortunately I discovered OpenPhone and the process was very simple to get started!” – Jeremy E.
“I can be in touch in any place of World for the same price by my local phone number. I can easily transfer this number in one click to another person when I’m in vacation or have day off.” – Ihor S.
If you’re ready to give OpenPhone a test run, then try us free for seven days. We mean it!
Meagan is a professional writer in VA that specializes in content marketing, research, and SEO. If she’s not helping people craft their own stories, she’s working on some of her own.