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Encyclopedia > Japanese telephone numbering plan
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Japanese telephone numbering plan

Country Code: 81


Area codes (市外局番 "shigai-kyokuban") of selected major cities

 011 Sapporo 022 Sendai 0242 Aizu Wakamatsu 025 Niigata 026 Nagano 028 (next digit 6) Utsunomiya 03 Tokyo 043 (next digit 2 or 3) Chiba 044 Kawasaki 045 Yokohama 048 Saitama (formed in 2001 by the merger of three cities) 052 Nagoya 054 and 0543 Shizuoka 06 Osaka 0742 Nara 075 Kyoto 076 Kanazawa 0776 Fukui 078 Kobe 0792 Himeji 082 Hiroshima 0852 Matsue 088 (next digit 6) Tokushima 088 (next digit 8) Kochi 089 (next digit 9) Matsuyama 092 Fukuoka 095 (next digit 8) Nagasaki 096 Kumamoto 098 Okinawa 099 Kagoshima 

Details about prefixes

In general, land line (primarily NTT) numbers are 10 digits long, with area codes in inverse proportion to city size.

 06 xxxx xxxx (Osaka) 075 xxx xxxx (Kyoto) 0742 xx xxxx (Nara) 04992 x xxxx (Niijima island, Tokyo pref.) 082486 xxxx (Takano, Hiroshima pref.) 

Area codes increase from north to south; Sapporo in Hokkaido (the northernmost prefecture) has 011, and Setouchi-cho's 09973 is far to the south in Kagoshima. When the telephone system was devised, Okinawa was still under US occupation, so when it was returned to Japan in 1972, its telephone numbers were squeezed between Miyazaki (098x) and Kagoshima (099x), and begin with 0988, 0989, and 0980. Belligerent military occupation, occurs when one nations military garrisons occupy all or part of a foreign nation during an invasion (during or after a war). ...


Other numbers are 11 digits long, such as mobile numbers, which have either the 090 or 080 prefixes followed by eight digits. Similarly, PHS phones have 070; dedicated internet lines have 050 (with the last four digits often matching the subscriber's land-based number), and personal pagers 020.


Especially during the 1990s, as plans were being drawn up to amalgamate mid-sized cities and towns into larger municipalities, telephone numbering systems were merged in advance. For example,

 07442 x xxxx Kashihara (Nara prefecture) 07444 x xxxx Sakurai 074452 xxxx Takatori 074454 xxxx Asuka etc. 

became:

 0744 2x xxxx Kashihara 0744 4x xxxx Sakurai 0744 52 xxxx Takatori 0744 54 xxxx Asuka etc. 

Many of these towns have in fact refused to merge, leaving callers with more digits to dial when making local calls. This is partially balanced by not having to dial an area code for the neighboring city.


Special emergency numbers in Japan include 110 for the police and 119 for the fire department.


Toll-free calls have the prefixes 0120 and 0800, and special-charge nationwide numbers begin with 0570 and 0990.


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