Saturday, September 8, 2012

WOA: Dialing Internationally

WOA: Dialing Internationally (or just because you can jump in real life doesn't mean you can get across a tiny stream in game)

Things I have learnt about Internatinonal Calling while in Australia
(where I not only have to do it myself, but need to coach other people on how to call me. When I can't call myself. It is tricky.)

First off, making international phone calls from/to countries that have completely different number systems is totally hard. Usually, when travelling, you try to use your phone as little as possible. When you've moved, that's not what's happening. Here's what six months living in Australia has taught me.

"1" is the North American country code, not a magic number that lets you call long distance.

You need to dial an exit code when calling beyond North America, which we Canadians have trouble remembering because we can dial internationally to the US like normal long distance whenever we want.

In Australia, that exit code is 0011, which means that when I dial N.A. I actually have to put in 00111 (area) (7digitnumber) which looks ridiculous, what with the three 1s all in a row, but is correct. Having one as an area code seems all fine and dandy until you have to actually use it.

Sending a text message to an international mobile number will bizarrely not follow these rules and numbers you can call will not be textable.

Various permutations of these rules will not work.

Scouring the internet will reveal that most people give up and just reply to the Canadian number and save it.

It actually turns out that if you put a  (+) sign in front of the normal 1 + (area code) + (7digitnumber) in your phone, the mobile recognizes that symbol and will just automatically apply the correct exit code when you dial/text.

Seriously? How did I not know this? We use phones all the flipping time and this is the first mention I've seen tha the little plus sign actually does something useful and isn't shorthand for something. My iphone would save numbers with it All The Time and I just thought it was being pretentious.

So yes, dialing a phone, yet another thing you have to relearn when you move to another country. Pretty sure I just figured out the international texting thing today. >.<

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