Domestic & International Calls
Romania has a modern telephone network of landlines and mobile (cell) phones. It's possible to receive and make direct international calls from anywhere in the country. Romania's country code is 40.
- All Romanian landline numbers have 10 digits, consisting of a zero, plus a city code and the number.
- The formula differs slightly depending on whether the number is in Bucharest or outside of Bucharest. Bucharest numbers take the form: 0 + two-digit city code (21 or 31) + seven-digit number. Outside of Bucharest, numbers take the form: 0 + three-digit city code + six-digit number.
- Mobile-phone numbers can be identified by a three-digit prefix starting with 7. All mobile numbers have 10 digits: 0 + three-digit prefix (7xx) + six-digit number.
Calling Within Romania
- If you are calling from within Romania, to reach a landline outside of Bucharest, dial 0 + three-digit city code + six-digit number.
- To reach a landline in Bucharest, dial 0 + 21 (or 31) + seven-digit number.
- To reach any mobile number, dial 0 + three-digit mobile prefix + six-digit number.
Dialing From Abroad
To reach a Romanian landline from abroad, dial your country's international access code, then 40 (Romanian country code), then the city code (minus the zero) and the six- or seven-digit local number. For example, a call to a landline in Bucharest from abroad would take the form: international access code + 40 (country code) + 21 + seven-digit number.
- For a mobile number, use the three-digit mobile prefix instead of the city code. A call to a mobile number from abroad would follow the form: international access code + 40 (country code) + three-digit mobile prefix + six-digit number.
- To call abroad from Romania, dial the international access code in Romania (00), then the code for the country you want to call, then the area code and number.
Local SIM cards can be used in European, Australian and some American phones. Other phones must be set to roaming.
Romanian mobile (cell) phones use the GSM 900/1800 network, which is the standard throughout much of Europe as well as in Australia and New Zealand and many other parts of the world. This band is not compatible with most mobile phones in North America or Japan (though multiband phones do work across regions). Ask your provider if you're uncertain whether your phone will work.
- Using your own phone and SIM card in Romania could expose you to expensive roaming fees, particularly for long calls or data downloads. A cheaper option is to buy a prepaid Romanian SIM card, which gives you a temporary local number and charges local (cheaper) rates for calls, texts and data transfers. These cards only work with phones that are 'unlocked' (able to accept foreign SIM cards).
- Prepaid SIM plans start at about 20 lei per card and usually include some bonus minutes. They are offered by all three of Romania's main carriers: Vodafone (www.vodafone.ro), Telekom Romania (www.telekom.ro) and Orange (www.orange.ro).
- Buy prepaid SIM cards at any provider shop or independent phone seller. You can top up cards at phone shops, newspaper kiosks and even some ATMs. Shops around the country also sell new or used phones that can be used in conjunction with local prepaid SIM cards.
- The situation is more complicated if you have a smartphone like an iPhone or Android device that may not be easily unlocked. With these phones, it's best to contact your home provider to consider short-term international calling and data plans appropriate to your needs.
- Even if you're not using your smartphone as a phone, it still makes a handy wi-fi device. Switch off the 'data roaming' setting to avoid unwanted roaming fees.
Pay Phones & Phonecards
- Public phones usually require a magnetic-stripe phonecard, which you can buy from post offices, newspaper kiosks, and some tourist offices and hotel reception desks.
- Phonecard rates start at about 10 lei and allow for a certain number of impulses (minutes).
- It's possible to dial abroad from a pay telephone.