Calgary

Alberta's new area code kicks in today

The ability to create a city-themed rap song using an area code gets a little more diluted in Alberta today with the introduction of yet another three-digit number not tied to geography.

From one area code to four within 18 years

A new Alberta area code, 825, comes into effect on April 9. (Gajus/Shutterstock)

The ability to create a city-themed rap song using an area code gets a little more diluted in Alberta today with the introduction of yet another three-digit number not tied to geography.

While you could once tell if someone was from Edmonton and areas north by their 780-fronted phone number and Calgary or south with a 403, we've since added a wandering 587 code — and now, an equally free-ranging 825 prefix.

The addition is due to high demand for new phone numbers in the province, a dwindling supply of old codes thanks to the popularity of cell phones, and an expanding population. 

From one to four

Until 1999 the entire province was under the 403 area code, but it was then split, with the north using 780 and the southern portion of Alberta using 403. 

In 2008, geographic restrictions were removed with the addition of the 587 prefix. 

Alberta is now on par with B.C., which also has four area codes, but remains well below Ontario's 13 or Quebec's 10.

Albertans have been dialing ten numbers to make calls for some time now and no one is required to change their current number or area code. 

All the usual three-digit numbers, like 911 or 311, remain unchanged.

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