Calling Russia and other countries of former Soviet Union — Basic information
Important: Area code for Moscow has been changed to 495. The old code (095) will no longer work after February 1, 2006. Why did they change it?
There are two ways to make an international call: to dial directly from your phone or to use a prepaid calling card. Direct dialing is more convenient and usually of higher quality, but at the same time - more expensive. You should consult your long distance carrier about the rates. Unless you subscribe to an international calling plan with them, the rates to CIS may be very high ($1 per minute and more). You may choose one of international calling plans offered by most of long distance companies. According to the rates of the plan, you will have to pay $3 to $5 per month and get a decent rate to selected countries (20-50 cents per minute). You should find out at your long distance company about that. Check out our rates.
Prepaid calling cards give you a wonderful opportunity to make incredibly inexpensive calls to Russia and former Soviet Republics (only 2.9 cents per minute to Moscow!) The drawback of prepaid calling cards is the necessity to dial several extra numbers. Moreover, the quality of the line will suffer. It is not a problem, however, if you can program your phone to dial those numbers for you and sacrifice a little bit of sound quality. Also, the calling cards are very convenient with mobile phones. A mobile phone can easily be programmed to dial the access codes, and you will get those unbelievably low rates (plus airtime, of course) right from your mobile phone.
If you have never before had to call Russia or other countries of former USSR, it may present quite a problem. The American system (3 digit area code + 7 digit number) is rather different from the one adopted in the countries mentioned above. The latter is very complicated, with variable lenght of area code (3 to 5 digits) and the number itself (5 to 7 digits). There is a reason for that. If you want to know the reason, see Detailed Information. In order not to get frustrated, see the information below.
If you are making a call direct from your phone, you need to dial certain code to get the international line first. In the US it is "011". From most mobile phones it is "+" (the "plus" character). In Europe it's "+" or "00".
Then, dial the country code. For Russia it's "7". For Ukraine it's "380". For Belarus it's "375". For other countries, see the Detailed Information.
Next, dial the area (city) code. Here is the list of most popular ones:
See the codes for the rest of the cities in Detailed Information
Finally, dial her local number. The sum of all digits you dial, starting with country code, must be 11 for Russia, and 12 for Belarus and Ukraine.
If you decided to use a prepaid calling card, follow the instructions on the card, and when the prompt says: "Enter the number you wish to dial", or something of the kind, enter the sequence described above.
Keep in mind, that the lady's phone number that is given to you may or may not contain the area code and country code.
Because of sheer complexity of the system, we let the ladies or their agents fill out their phone numbers with area and country codes to the best of their knowledge. In case the phone number does not work if you dial it exactly how you received it, try to figure it out by matching area code, country code, etc., per these instructions and Detailed Information
There is one final tricky part here. We have done our best to correct this issue in almost all of our numbers, but you may still run into this, if you had gotten a phone number from some other agency. In the countries of former Soviet Union, one dials "8" before the area code to get a long distance line. It's much like dialing "1" in the US. Therefore, a lot of ladies put an "8", or "+8" in front of their number, and that makes it look as a country code. However, the country code for Russia is "7". So you need to replace the digit "8" in front of the phone number with the digit "7", if only digit "8" is not part of area code. Again, make sure that the sum of all digits you dial, starting with country code, is 11 for Russia and 12 for Belarus and Ukraine. It may be less than 11 if your recipient has one of the older numbers which are being updated now. Though it is a very rare occasion, it may happen. In this case you may have to enter additional "2"s or "0" between the area code and the number, to make the total of 11 or 12 digits. You will find details in Detailed Information. Sometimes it is not easy to figure out the correct way to dial the number. The best solution here is to write down the sequences you have already tried on a piece of paper. This is the way not to get confused with long numbers.
Below you will see the examples of dialing phone numbers for the most popular cities. In those examples, the X's represent single digits of the local subsriber's number. The dialing sequences are for dialing from US and Canada. Our Australian, European, and other customers should replace the "011" with the code adopted in their countries.
Keep it in mind that time difference between the countries is several hours, and you will have to calculate it correctly before the call, just not to phone them in the middle of the night. We've had our ladies complain that they get unexpected calls from USA at 3 or 4 AM. On this ground some ladies choose not to list their number in our catalogue. See the Time Difference chart here.
How to call Russia and other CIS countries