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The Phone System in Cancun Mexico

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How does the Cancun Phone System work?

  • To dial USA/Canada from Cancun from a land line: 001-(area code) and 7 digit number
  • To dial Cancun from USA/Canada from a land line: 011-52 998 and 7 digit number
  • To dial Europe from Cancun from a land line: 00-(country code) and the number
  • To dial Cancun from Playa del Carmen from a land line: 01-998 and 7 digit number
  • In Mexico you can try to dial 800 US numbers from a land line by dialing 001-880 in place of the 800. It sometimes works but you might get an AT&T or Mexican recording that basically says, �no way... we will place the call but it is going to cost you at normal long distance rates.� If it rings normally and no recording comes on, you're in!.
  • If you are in Cancun and are phoning someones house or business from a land line you just dial the 7 digits
  • If you are in Cancun and are phoning a local cell phone you dial from a land line 044-998 followed by 7 digits
  • If you are in any Mexican city and are phoning a local cell phone you dial the area code followed by 7 digits. In Cancun you dial 998 followed by 7 digits.
  • If you are in anywhere in Mexico on a land line and are phoning a Mexican long distance cell phone you dial 045- followed by 10 digits
  • If you are a foreigner and live here, get a Vonage or MagicJack U.S. phone number and an Internet connection. This gives you a U.S. phone number here.

Tips for Internet Connected phones (Android/iOS)

Great programs

  • If you have a MagicJack, download the new App and your phone will make and receive US/Canada calls using your Internet connection.
  • Download Viber to make/receive free phone calls worldwide with other members (popular).

Tips and interesting stuff to know

Everyone here has a cell. Incoming cell calls are generally paid for by the person that is calling. An excellent idea! But to warn people that they are going to be calling a cell phone the numbering system had to be changed. In Cancun when you call a cell phone (that is also in Cancun) you need to dial 044 and the 998 area code first. That �044' lets you know that you are going to pay for the call. Ah, but this introduced a new problem. How do people outside of Cancun call you? It had to be compatible with the �standard' phone system. OK. So they decided that anyone outside of Cancun can call a Cancun cell by dialing +52 998 followed by the 7 digit cell phone number.... just like a normal Cancun phone. So a cell client in Cancun ends up paying for incoming �long distance' calls but not for incoming �local calls'.

When using a Telcel phone and want to check your balance FOR FREE, just dial *133# and hit send. Your balance will appear on your screen.

One more thing that is critical to know... never make a long distance phone call from a hotel room or a phone booth that is not marked Ladatel/TelMex . You can pay as much as USD 25 dollars a minute.

Go to an Oxxo or 7/11 type of store and get a Ladatel/TelMex prepaid phone card. The 50 peso (USD $4.00) card is popular. To phone Canada/US from Mexico is approx USD $0.50 a minute and perhaps only 2 pesos or so for a typical local call. Phone booths don't take coins. When using the Ladatel/TelMex prepaid card the phone will tell you how much money is left on the card when you insert it. When it gets to zero you end up with a nice souvenir. However, phone booths are becoming less and less popular because you get a cheap cell phone for about USD $30 and an instant Cancun phone number.


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