The original area code
for toll free telephone number
s, where the cost of the phone call is paid for by the called party not the caller
. Often used by medium or large size business
es so that customer
s can contact them without paying. It used to be called a WATS
number, but toll free is in common use now.
The 800 area code provided more than enough toll free phone numbers for years and years. However, with lower long distance toll costs, companies wanting toll free fax numbers and things like personal 800 service the supply of 800 numbers dwindled. Now, 888 and 877 are toll free area codes, and 866 is coming as well.
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