03 numbers vs 08 numbers and other NGNs – what’s the difference?

The latest of the non-geographic telephone numbers introduced by the UK’s telecom regulator Ofcom are 03 (also known as 033) numbers. Although somewhat comparable to 0800 free-phone numbers which are also non-geographic, UK 03 numbers are virtual and can be routed to either mobile numbers or landlines. This is a great option for businesses who want to seem more professional without having to answer important business calls from a mobile number. In comparison, 03 numbers are incredibly cheap seeing as they’re the same price as local landline calls even if you’re calling from a mobile phone! Regarding differences between 0800 and 03 numbers, the most considerable one is that 0800 numbers are free to call from landlines.

Regarding 08 numbers, 0844 calls can be charged up to 5 pence per minute from a landline number. 0845 numbers then start to get even more expensive than this, but they can still be included in free calls if that’s what your phone tariff/package stipulates. Then onto 0870 numbers. These are commonly known costing a much more premium rate when phoning a business, so are therefore only really used for special services which will cost you a lot more. All 0800 calls in the USA and Europe are toll free, even when called from mobile numbers making them still attractive to use.

Should I choose an 03 number or an 08 number?

Ofcom has made a proposal to make calling 0800 numbers from mobiles absolutely free to abolish this oddity. Although, 03 numbers will still be the only non-geographic numbers left which are the still the same price as local calls. This will be the same from both landlines and mobiles respectively.

030 numbers (0300 – 0309) are solely used for the public and not-for-profit businesses and organisations, whereas 033 numbers (0330 – 0339) can be used by individuals or businesses. 03 migration numbers (034x, 037x) however, are especially given to numbers migrating from existing 08 numbers or numbers from the range 084 and 087.

Different types of organisations are allocated different number sequences and therefore they are easily identifiable. It’s good to know that 0330 – 0339 numbers are specially assigned to businesses or organisations, regardless of the size of the business. This is great for businesses because it means that their customers will be paying the same as a UK local landline (even via mobile) to call them.

When a customer calls you, the 03 number is instantly routed to your current landline or mobile number which is like other non-geographic numbers. These 03 numbers are very easy to set up online, not requiring any specific software or hardware installations, making them very versatile and quick to use. 03 numbers are also linked to a professional business image and therefore will make you seem more trustworthy. If you’re looking for authoritative call management features alongside daytime routing, sending fax to email as well as your call statistics, you might want to use Numberstore. They provide all of these services in affordable plans which are cost-effective and suitable for any kind of business.