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Phone numbers in India change at the drop of a hat, and businesses are slow in updating contact information, including websites.

To call India:

1. Dial the international access code: 011 (from the U.S. and Canada); 00 (from the U.K., Ireland, or New Zealand); or 0011 (from Australia).

2. Dial the country code: 91.

3. Dial the city code, omitting the first zero.

4. Dial the telephone number.

Note: To call a cellphone number in India, follow up to step 2 above and then dial the 10-digit cellphone number, which should begin with "9."

Making calls within India: Hotel telephone costs are exorbitant, even when you make a domestic long-distance call. All over India, you'll see yellow ISD/STD signs indicating a privately operated "International Subscriber Dialing" and "Standard Trunk Dialing" facility; these are very reasonably priced. To call a mobile phone number that is not in the city in which you are based, dial "0" before the 10-digit number. Note that the Indian toll-free numbers (1/800) cannot be dialed from cellphones and land lines that don't belong to the MTNL or BSNL networks.

Making calls from cellphones: When making calls from cellphones, you'll need to punch in the full area code of the city and telephone number irrespective of where you are calling from (even for local calls). To call a cellphone number within a city, just dial the 10-digit cellphone number; to call a cellphone outside your city, add a "0" before the number.

To make international calls: Dial 00 and then the country code (U.S. or Canada 1, U.K. 44, Ireland 353, Australia 61, New Zealand 64). Next, dial the area code and number. For example, if you want to call the British Embassy in Washington, D.C., dial tel. 00-1-202-588-7800.

For directory assistance: Dial tel. 197 if you're looking for a local number within India, and dial tel. 183 for long-distance numbers within India. Don't hold your breath for accurate or up-to-date assistance, and speak slowly and clearly.

For operator assistance: If the phone you're using is not an International Subscriber Dialing (ISD) facility, you'll need operator assistance and must dial tel. 186. Using an ISD facility without the need for an operator will save you a great deal of time. Toll-free numbers: To call a 1-800 number in the U.S. from India, first contact the international operator through the Direct Access service. For a call to the U.S., call tel. 000-117 (AT&T Direct Access), which gives you an AT&T operator, through whom you can make your toll-free or collect call. Note, however, that these Direct Access calls cannot be made from everywhere; to ensure you won't be charged for the call, check with your hotel before dialing.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.