With area code 640, 609 no longer rules southern Jersey Shore

Public domain image

Public domain image

Get ready for 640.

That’s the new area code that will soon cover a large swath of South Jersey, including the Shore areas from southern Ocean County to Cape May County, as 609 numbers are on the verge of exhaustion.

While phone numbers within the 640 area code won’t be issued until Sept. 17, residents in the 609 and 856 area code areas now must change the way their dial phone numbers, according to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.

In South Jersey areas well separated from area code 856 in the southwestern portion of the state, it is common for businesses to advertise only seven digits. But that will now change.

Callers even within the same area code must dial the full, ten-digit phone number for all calls as of August 18. Calls will not go through unless you follow the new procedures from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities:

  • Call From 609 or 640 to 609 or 640: Area Code + seven-digit telephone number.
  • Call From 609 or 640 to 856 or any area code other than 609 or 640: 1 + area code + seven-digit telephone number.
  • Call from 856 to 609 or 640 or any area code other than 856: 1 + area code + seven-digit telephone number.
  • Call from 856 to 856: seven-digit telephone number.

“It is important that all consumers take a moment to understand and implement the new dialing procedures,” said New Jersey Board of Public Utilities President Joseph L. Fiordaliso. “Once they get used to the changes the new dialing procedures should become second nature.”

Area code 640 will be the tenth in the state, joining 201, 551, 609, 732, 848, 856, 862, 908, and 973.

201 was the first area code assigned to New Jersey in 1947. It covered the entire state until 609 was added for South Jersey in 1958.

As demand increased through the decades, 908 was introduced in 1991, and the additional area codes followed due to the ubiquity of fax machines, pagers, and later cell phones.

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