What are 0808 numbers?
0808 number is telephone numbers here the UK that start with the numbers 0808. These are freephone numbers that are classed as non-geographic – they aren’t connected to any particular part of the country. You can call them free of charge for landlines and from mobiles while inside the UK.
- Freephone: 0808 numbers are one of the group of numbers known as ‘freephone’ numbers because there is no charge to call them even if you ring from a mobile. This is because the company offering the number pays the cost so people calling them don’t have to. They were first introduced back in 1997 when there was a need to add more numbers to the existing 0800 networks. 0808 numbers are different to standard numbers such as 01, 02, 03 and 09 which have a per-minute rate set for every call.
- Non-Geographic: 0808 numbers are also classed as non-geographic. This means they aren’t associated with any particular part of the country. This is different to numbers such as 0161 which is the geographic code for Manchester and is used for homes and businesses within the city and surrounding area. Other non-geographic numbers include 0800, 03 and 09 numbers.
Special types of 0808 phone numbers
While most of the 0808 numbers don’t have particular usage permission and can be used by any type of business or organisation, there are a few exceptions to know to help you understand who you are calling.
- 08089 numbers are only used by dial-up internet services but most of these are now obsolete due to the use of broadband technologies – they remain as an emergency backup for the broadband system
- 08080 numbers used to have the prefix 0321 before changes to the numbers system in 2000
- 08085 is where all the numbers currently starting 0500 are being moved to during the course of 2017
- 080880 numbers are only for charities and advice helplines and fall under the administration of the Helplines Partnership.
Examples of 0808 numbers
- 0808 234 9279 – this is the main number of AOL, the American multimedia and email hosting company
- 0808 163 5559 – this is the number for the Life Insurance side of Aviva, one of the UK’s biggest insurers
- 0808 100 0707 – this is the number for the Tesco Clubcard Boost, the system where you can swap your rewards for money off vouchers to use in departments of the supermarket
Cost of calling 0808 numbers
0808 numbers are free from all landlines and mobiles in the UK, just the same as 0800 numbers. However, they can sometimes be blocked for payphone users due to the high cost of using them for the organisation offering the phone line.