Need to make a call to Germany? Wondering how you write and dial German phone numbers? In this guide, we walk you through the format of phone numbers in Germany and explain everything you need to know about making a call in the federal republic.
How to get a German phone number
If you're looking to get a German phone number, check out our recommend providers below:
Get a mobile phone number
These mobile phone providers all operate in Germany:
Or you could use a price comparison site such as DeinHandy to compare packages.
Get a landline number
The biggest fixed phone line providers in Germany are:
Phone number format in Germany (Germany dialling codes)
German phone numbers consist of three parts:
Country code +49 (Ländervorwahl)
The first part of a phone number in Germany is the country code (Ländervorwahl). The country code for Germany is +49 or 0049. You only need to add the country code if you are calling a German number from abroad. If you are using a country code, then you drop the “0” from the next part of the number, the local area code. The “+” and the “00” are interchangeable.
Area code (Vorwahl)
The next part of the phone number is the area code (Vorwahl). Germany has 5.200 geographical area codes, which vary in length between two and five digits. For example, the area code of Berlin is 030, Munich is 089, Frankfurt is 069 and Hamburg is 040, whereas Heidelberg’s area code is 06221 and Dresden’s is 0351.
Below you can see a map of geographic area codes in Germany:
The local number (Rufnummer)
The rest of the number is made up of an assortment of other digits known as the local number (Rufnummer or Telefonnummer). According to the Bundesnetzagentur, the maximum length of a complete telephone number is 15 digits, so this part may be shorter or longer depending on the length of the area code.
Landline phone number format in Germany
So, putting all this together, the number of a landline phone in Germany might look something like this: +49 30 12345678. The “+49” tells us this is a German phone number, while the “30” tells us it’s a phone number based in Berlin.
Mobile numbers in Germany
Mobile numbers in Germany follow this same logic, although the “area” code has nothing to do with geography. In fact, all mobile phone numbers are assigned the non-geographic area code “1”. So, all mobile numbers in Germany start +491.
Mobile phone numbers in Germany have either a four or five-digit prefix. Historically, these prefixes were issued to specific mobile telephony providers. For example, 0151 and 0160 were owned by T-Mobile, 0152 and 0162 by Vodafone, and 0155, 0157 and 0159 by o2, but since people can nowadays port their mobile phone numbers to different networks, this classification is no longer really accurate.
Example German phone number
So, an example landline phone number in Germany could be something like: +49 30 902694000 (this is the real number for the Immigration & Naturalisation service in Berlin). An example German mobile phone number is +49 151 1234567 or +49 1781 123456.
How to write and dial a phone number in Germany
When you dial a phone number in Germany, the number you input can change depending on where you’re calling from, and what kind of phone you’re using:
Dialling German phone numbers from abroad
If you’re calling from a landline outside of Germany, you would need the country code, the area code and the local number, so for our example number above you would dial: +49 30 902694000
Calling local numbers in Germany
If you’re calling from a German landline to another landline within the same area code, you can simply enter the local number. For the example above, you could dial: 902694000.
If you’re calling from a landline to another landline in a different area code, you need to include the area code, so for our example you would dial: 030 902694000
Dialling German mobile phone numbers
If you’re calling a mobile phone number from within Germany, you can drop the country code, so for the example mobile number above you would dial: 0151 1234567.
To call a German mobile number from abroad, you need the country code, so the number you’d dial is: +49 151 1234567.
If you travel a lot, it’s a good idea to save numbers in your mobile phone with the country codes included, so you never need to manually add it if calling from abroad.
Special prefix telephone numbers (Sonderrufnummer)
Just as in other countries, Germany has a number of special prefix telephone numbers that can be very costly to call. You should watch out for numbers like:
- 0190 or 0900: Often used for customer hotlines or “adult entertainment”, and can cost up to 25 euros per minute to call from a landline, and even more from a mobile.
- 0180: Often used as a company service number. It’s free so long as you’re waiting but when you get through to an agent you’ll pay a maximum of 20 cents per minute from a landline and 42 cents per minute from a mobile.
- 0137: Mostly used to cast votes for TV shows. One call generally costs around 50 cents.
- 0800: All of these numbers are free to call.
Emergency phone numbers
There are special phone numbers to call in an emergency in Germany. You can find out which one to use when on our page on the 110 & 112 numbers in Germany.
How to find someone’s phone number in Germany
If you’re looking for a phone number in Germany, the easiest place to look first would almost certainly be the internet. Most businesses in Germany will have their phone numbers listed on search engines, but alternatively you could also consult dastelefonbuch.de, the online version of the old school telephone book.
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