How to Make International Phone Calls to/from the USA

How to Make International Phone Calls to/from the USA

The first international phone call I ever made occurred from a police station in Windsor, Canada. Just as I was preparing to cross the Ambassador Bridge and return to the United States, I realized my Michigan license plate was missing. Unsure how to get home, a police officer helped me place an international phone call. During that call, I discovered that I had somehow managed to drive to the US-Candian border, cross the international bridge and spend a few days sightseeing without a license plate. What happened to the plate? It was laying in the driveway –– back at home!

My second international phone call took place years later on Christmas Day in Cozumel, Mexico to wish my older brother a Merry Christmas. A man in a leather cowboy hat facilitated that call.

My third international phone call transpired shortly after moving to Busan, South Korea. I bought a 10,000 won phone card for 30 minutes of talk time to call my parents. I suggested they call me in the future, but they seemed to believe that an international phone call was a complicated story problem that could only be solved by the family member out of the country –– me.

Now, several years later, I've made international phone calls from around the globe and while I use mobile apps to place calls nowadays, knowing how to dial internationally to landlines and cellphones is still relevant. 

In this post, I'm going to show you how to make an international call to and from the United States.

You Might Also Like These Posts:

Phone Calls to/from the USA


To the USA

  1. Dial your country’s international direct dialing number (+010 for Japan).
  2. Dial the USA’s country code (+1).
  3. If the area code starts with “0,” drop the “0” and dial the rest of the area code + the phone number.

From the USA

  1. Dial the international direct dialing number (+011).
  2. Dial the code of the country you’re calling (+81 for Japan).
  3. If the area code starts with “0,” drop the “0” and dial the rest of the area code + the phone number.

    Subscribe to the Culture Gaps Newsletter

    By subscribing to my Newsletter, you've read and agree to the Privacy Notice and Terms & Conditions.

    No spam. We respect your privacy. Powered by ConvertKit


    You just learned how to make an international phone call to/from the United States. Remember, international calls may be subject to additional rates and fees.

    How do you make international calls? From a landline, cellphone or desktop/mobile app? Answer in the Comments below.

    How to Make International Phone Calls to/from the USA first appeared on the Culture Gaps Blog by Jeff Shibasaki.


    Save to Pinterest


    Jeff Shibasaki blogs about effective communication skills for the USA at Culture Gaps and healthy web design for unhealthy websites at Bento Sites.