New 686 Area Code Is Coming to Virginia’s 804 Area Code Region


JAN 17, 2024

RICHMOND – Virginia’s 804 area code region will soon have an additional area code – 686. Customers requesting new service or additional phone lines in the 804 area code region could be assigned the new 686 area code as soon as February 1, 2024, but not until all available phone numbers in the 804 area code have run out. That is expected to happen during the third quarter of 2024.

In November 2022, the State Corporation Commission (SCC) approved the implementation of the new 686 area code to be superimposed over the same geographic region covered by the existing 804 area code. This area includes the central portion of Virginia including Richmond, Ashland, Charles City, Chesterfield, Henrico, New Kent and Petersburg, as well as the Northern Neck.

The new 686 area code addresses the exhaustion of phone numbers in the 804 area code caused by increasing demand for phone lines. The relief provided by the new 686 area code is expected to last approximately 32 years.

Existing customers will keep their 804 area code and seven-digit telephone number. Customers in the 804 area code already transitioned to mandatory 10-digit dialing (three-digit area code plus seven-digit phone number) for local calls in July 2022 as a result of the national implementation of 988, the three-digit abbreviated dialing code for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Ten-digit dialing for local calls will also be required for customers in the new 686 area code. Thus, customers in the 804 and 686 area codes will dial 10 digits for local calls within and between the overlay area codes, and 1+10 digits for long distance calls.

Under the 804/686 area code overlay, what is a local call now will remain a local call. In addition, the price of a call, coverage area or other rates and services will not change due to the 686 area code overlay. Customers can still dial just three digits to reach 911 and 988, as well as 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711, and 811.

The SCC encourages consumers in the 804 area code region to ensure that all services, automatic dialing equipment or other types of equipment recognize the new 686 area code as a valid area code and continue to store or program telephone numbers as 10-digit numbers.

For more information, please contact your local telephone service provider or visit the SCC website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

Case Number: PUR-2022-00083 In the matter of the Commission's investigation into exhaust relief for the 804 area code