Limber up those fingers. It's going to take more work to call your friend across town or to order a pizza.

Telephone users in southern Indiana's 812 area code - that's us - should dial the regular seven-digit number plus the three-digit area code beginning Saturday.

State officials are instructing us to include the area code any time we make a phone call, not just on calls to different area codes.

Local calls without the area code will still work until early September to give people adequate time to adjust to the change.

The change in dialing patterns is necessary for the introduction of the new 930 area code, which will be implemented this fall. The new code is being added through the "overlay" method, which has been used for all new area code additions in the United States since 2008.

An overlay is the addition of another area code to the same geographic region as an existing area code. An overlay does not require customers to change their existing phone numbers.

The new area code is being implemented due to projections that all numbering supplies for 812 will be exhausted in 2015.

Beginning Sept. 6, you must use ten-digit dialing for all local phone calls. After this date, if you do not use the new dialing procedures, your call will not be completed and a recording will instruct you to hang up and dial again.

Beginning Oct. 6, new telephone lines or services may be assigned numbers using the new 930 area code.

The most important facts for residential consumers and businesses to know are:

• Your telephone number, including current area code, will not change.

• You will need to dial area code + telephone number for all local calls. 

• You will continue to dial 1 + area code + telephone number for all long distance calls.

• What is a local call now will remain a local call. 

• The price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services will not change due to the overlay.

• You can still dial just three digits to reach 211, 411, 811, or 911.

Consumers should identify their telephone number as a ten digit number (Area Code + 7 digit local number), and include the area code when giving the number to their friends, family, business associates and customers, etc.

Consumers should also ensure that all services, automatic dialing equipment, applications, software, or other types of equipment recognize the new 930 area code as a valid area code.

You should also make sure that all pre-programmed numbers for local calls are set to include the area code. Some examples are life safety systems, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, gates, speed dialers, mobile phone contact lists, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, and similar functions. Business stationery, advertising materials, personal checks, and personal or pet ID tags and microchips should also be checked to ensure that the phone number includes the 812 area code. 

More information is available from your local telephone company. You can also learn more from the OUCC's website or the IURC's website at