A toll-free phone number is a phone number with a distinct area code that can be dialed with no charge to the person placing the call.

If you’re here, that probably means your business is growing and you’re considering a toll-free number. Congratulations! Toll-free phone numbers give your business a professional edge. This way, you can look bigger to your potential clients even if you don’t have your own office, yet.

In this post, we answer the most common questions about toll-free numbers and show you how to get one in a couple of minutes.

What is a toll-free phone number?

Toll-free (or 1-800) phone numbers can be dialed with no charge to the person placing the call. They have distinct area codes that make it easy to recognize them. For example, these area codes are toll-free in North America – 800, 833, 844, 855, 866, 877, and 888.

What’s a vanity phone number?

A “vanity” phone number is a type of a toll-free number that spells out a name or word. For example, 1-800-FLOWERS or 1-855-LAW-FIRM.

How can I get a toll-free phone number?

These days, getting a toll-free phone number is as easy as getting an Uber. You can actually start calling and messaging from your 1-800 number within seconds.

Here’s how to do it on OpenPhone:

  1. Go to OpenPhone.co and click to Start Free Trial
  2. Enter your email or sign in with Google
  3. Pick your OpenPhone number. You can select a Toll-Free number
  4. Enter your credit card to start the trial. You can cancel anytime and won’t be charged until after the trial
  5. You’ll get the link to install the OpenPhone mobile app (iOS or Android)
  6. That’s it! You’ll be able to call and message from your toll-free number via web and mobile
We offer North American toll-free numbers at OpenPhone

Why should I get a toll-free phone number for my business?

There are many reasons why you’d want a toll-free number for your business:

  • Keep business and personal separate: When a call comes into your toll-free number, you know it’s for business and you can answer the call accordingly
  • Customer support: Not everyone has an unlimited long-distance calling plan. By offering a toll-free phone number for customer service, you’re removing any barriers that might prevent your clients or potential clients from reaching you.
  • Establish a nationwide presence: Having a toll-free number is a great way to show your customers and potential customers that you operate across the US and Canada. This is a great way to appeal more to customers across the country.
  • Look bigger and more established: When you’re just starting out, it’s very important to build trust with your customers. Having a 1-800 number makes your small business look a little bigger in your prospects’ eyes. We know this ourselves as we started OpenPhone not too long ago.

What are the downsides of toll-free numbers?

There are several limitations of toll-free phone numbers to consider.

  1. Toll-free numbers feel less personal. When you call a 1-800 number, you expect to talk to a support team rather than an individual. If you want to establish a more personal relationship with your customers, we recommend getting a local phone number.
  2. Toll-free numbers offered at OpenPhone are North American. This means that callers from the US and Canada won’t incur any long distance charges when calling the toll-free number. Callers from outside of the US and Canada would incur long distance charges based on their local carrier.
  3. Toll-free numbers don’t support receiving picture messages. If you expect to send and receive pictures, we recommend getting a local phone number.

Hard to choose between a toll-free and a local number? Get both and never look back 🙂

Ready to get a toll-free number with OpenPhone and start calling within the first 30 seconds? Get started here.


Customer Service and Operations at OpenPhone. Founder of SOUL House artist showcase in the GTA. Art is life!

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