Nova Scotia is turning to 10-digit dialing this Saturday.
Almost all the numbers in the 902 area code are taken, so Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island are adopting 782 as a new area code.
As of Aug. 23, people will also need to dial 10 digits, the area code then the seven-digit number, when making a local call.
Receptionist Susan Lownie spends nearly all her time at work on the phone. At the Casa Dante International Hair Studio, she handles about 60 calls an hour on the front desk.
“It's probably about 80 per cent of what we do is talk on the phone. Two lines going all day. Constantly,” she said.
But starting this weekend Lownie will have to pay closer attention to how she dials, adding 902 every time she picks up the phone.
“I knew it was coming, but I didn't know it was tomorrow,” she said. “I guarantee my first phone call I’m going to have to dial twice. I'm probably going to do it the old way and then do it the new way. I'm sure we'll get used to it.”
David O'Neail expects he won't notice a difference. As a matter of practice, he's added 902 on every single one of his cell phone contacts.
“But I know a lot of my friends are like, 'Oh I have to go back through and make that on every single number’ and that's a big pain. Hopefully maybe they'll come up with an app for that or something. Add 902,” he said.
While the Telecommunications Alliance has been urging people to follow O’Neail’s lead and practice, not everyone has heeded the call.
“I can remember our first phone number was 496 or something. It was only a couple of digits. So when they started to add the prefix, that's when life went downhill,” said Ken Foran with a laugh.
People will hear a warning every time they forget to punch in 10 numbers over the next two months.
Starting in November, 902 will be mandatory and the new area code and 782 will finally be introduced.