When living in Mexico or travelling, this guide will give you everything you need to know. How to make a call and your options of calling, emergency numbers as well as area codes.
Payphones and Phone Cards
Public pay phones are one of the cheapest ways to call when in Mexico. Public phone boxes do not accept coins, you will have to purchase phone cards - or tarjetas telefonicas - these can be bought at supermarkets, some gas stations, newstands and in pharmacies in denominations of 30, 50 and 100 pesos. When buying a phone card for pay phone use, you will need to ask for a tarjeta lada as pre-paid cards for cell phones are also sold in the same places.
Emergency Contact Numbers in Mexico
You can call the 3 digit emergency numbers from any payphone without the use of a card. These numbers should be readily available.
• Emergency 066
• Police 060
• Red Cross 065
• Directory assistance 040
• Tourist protection and information 01 800 903 9200 or 01 800 987 8224, from the U.S. and Canada 1 800 482 9232 or 1 800 401 3880
Calling from Internet Cafes
Calling form an internet cafe is probably the easiest way to communicate when in Mexico. Internet cafes are easily accessible and this isa popular, cheap option for locals to make long distance calls. There are normally calling booths in the internet cafe so you have privacy. Rates for long distance phone calls are usually posted so you are aware of how much you are spending per minute when calling. Most internet cafes have rates displayed for use of the computers per minute. Some have wireless and offer a service that enables you to use your own laptop.
Calling with VOIP
Calling using VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) is the cheapest way to call in Mexico and indeed when you are home! Skype is incredibly popular with business people and travellers alike, with free Skype to Skype calls and low price calls to landlines or cell phones this is an increasingly popular way to make phone calls.
Area Codes/Calling outside Mexico
The US exit code 011 must be dialed first for all international calls made from the USA or Canada, then dial 52, the country code for Mexico. Area codes are 2-3 digits then you follow on with the phone number which will be 7 or 8 digits. So your number to call will be 10 digits in total. When calling from Europe use +52 or 0052 then use the area code and the number.
If you call a Mexican cell phone from a US or Canadian cell in Mexico you will need to dial 001 52 1 (ote the extra '1'), then the area code and the number, as if making the call internationally. From a European phone it would be 0052 1 then the area code and number.
Living in Mexico
If you are living in Mexico then you will most likely have a Telmex landline connection and broad band internet access. You can use this for VOIP to make low cost calls back home or within Mexico. Open an online account with Telmex and you'll be able to check your phone bills online and pay them by credit card too, even when you're not in Mexico.