561, meet 728: Palm Beach County gets new area code for new customers

·2 min read

Head’s up, Palm Beach County: There’s a new area code in town.

Anticipating that phone numbers starting with 561 will max out by 2023, the Florida Public Service Commission last week announced 728 as the newest area code to serve the region.

Customers who already have 561 phone numbers won’t see any changes, but new customers or additional line requests will get the 728 area code.

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It’s another reason to start getting used to 10-digit dialing – the three-digit area code plus the seven-digit phone number – which went into effect in October. A call won't be able to be completed without 10 digits.

The new area code is needed for a growing population and new technologies that use telephone numbers.

A man talks on a mobile phone while walking through the intersection of Clematis St. and S. Olive Ave. in downtown West Palm Beach Friday, April 19, 2019
A man talks on a mobile phone while walking through the intersection of Clematis St. and S. Olive Ave. in downtown West Palm Beach Friday, April 19, 2019

Dialing 10 digits for local calls is required because all calls made to “988” starting this summer will be directed to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Palm Beach County’s 561 area code is one of dozens across the country that use 988 as a local exchange, which is the name for the first three digits of a seven-digit phone number.

Palm Beach County started fully using 561 in 1997, after parting from the 407 area code, which covers the Orlando area.

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Every area code can technically have up to 7.9 million different phone numbers.

Palm Beach County is set to join its South Florida neighbors in getting a second actively used area code. Miami-Dade’s iconic 305 area code was actually Florida’s first in 1947, and 786 came online in 1998. Broward began using 954 in 1995, with 754 added in 2002.

Palm Beach County changed area codes from 305 to 407 to 561.

While Palm Beach County once used 305, the number started to become exhausted in 1988, making a new code necessary. New phone numbers from Palm Beach County to Orlando then used 407, the state’s fourth area code.

Meanwhile, the Public Service Commission is looking to add a third area code for Miami-Dade and Monroe counties, on top of 305 and 786.

The PSC most recently approved a new 448 area code for the Panhandle, which had been serviced by 850, and the change went into effect in May. Central Florida got the new 689 area code in 2019.

For more information, residents can contact their local telephone carrier or call the PSC’s customer assistance line at 1-800-342-3552.

Hannah Morse is a reporter covering Palm Beach County. She can be reached at hmorse@pbpost.com or 561-820-4833. Follow her on Twitter at @mannahhorse.

This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: New Palm Beach County area code numbers: 728 joins 561