New 861 area code coming to Illinois 309 area code region

Illinois Commerce Commission

With new telephone numbers in west-central Illinois in high demand, the Illinois Commerce Commission recently approved the implementation of an 861 area code to overlay the existing 309 area code region.

The 309 area code serves all or part of Hancock, Bureau, Dewitt, Fulton, Henderson, Henry, Knox, Marshall, Mason, McDonough, McLean, Mercer, Peoria, Rock Island, Schuyler, Stark, Tazewell, Warren, Whiteside, and Woodford counties. The 309 area code serves cities and communities such as Bloomington, Canton, Galesburg, Macomb, East Moline, East Peoria, Galesburg, Moline, Normal, Pekin, Peoria and Rock Island.

Starting on Feb. 24, customers in the 309 area code overlay region may be assigned a number in the new 861 area code when they request new service or an additional line. The 861 area code will co-exist everywhere in this region with the 309 area code. Customers receiving the 861 area code will be required to dial 10 digits (the area code and phone number) for all local calls, just as customers with telephone numbers from the 309 area code do today.

Customers should know about the 861 area code overlay that:

  • Telephone numbers, including the current area code, will not change.
  • The price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services will not change due to the overlay.
  • What is a local call now will remain a local call.
  • Customers in the overlay region will continue to dial 10 digits for local calls within and between the overlay area codes, and 1+10 digits for long distance calls.
  • Customers can still dial just three digits to reach 911 and 988, as well as 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 or 811 if those are currently available in their community.
  • Customers should continue to identify their telephone number as a 10-digit number (3-digit area code + 7-digit telephone number), and include the area code when giving the number to friends, family, business associates and customers, etc.

Customers should ensure that all services, automatic dialing equipment or other types of equipment recognize the new 861 area code as a valid area code and should continue to store or program telephone numbers as 10-digit numbers. Some examples include but are not limited to: stored telephone numbers in contact lists in wireless and cordless phones, PBXs, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, speed dialers, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, medical alert devices, safety alarm security systems and gates, ankle monitors and or other similar equipment. 

Customers should also ensure their websites, personal and business stationery and printed checks, advertising materials, contact information and personal or pet ID tags include the area code.

For more information, visit the Illinois Commission website athttps://www.icc.illinois.gov/programs/Area-Codes or your local service provider.

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