How to port a phone number

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Rob Webber
Rob Webber

Rob Webber


About Rob

Rob has 15+ years experience running price comparison & review websites that empower consumers to find the cheapest cell phone services, cell phone deals, home phone, and internet providers available. He has been published in Forbes, US News, Entrepreneur, Huffington Post, Inc.

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- Last updated on February 21st, 2023

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If you're tired of dealing with the hassle of switching phone numbers every time you switch from one service provider to another, then you'll be happy to know that you have the option to "port" your phone number.

Porting is more of an industry word, but porting phone numbers simply means that you can transfer your current phone number to a new provider. Wireless service providers have been doing this for years.

It basically means you can keep your existing number, and your family, friends, and business contacts will be none-the-wiser.

It can be a hassle-free process if you have the right information and preparation, but it can also be stressful if you don't know what you're doing.

In this article, we'll go over all the details you need to take to port your cell phone or landline number and what you need to keep in mind, as well as common questions about the process.

How to Port a Phone Number

What is phone number porting?

It's the process of transferring your existing phone number from one phone provider to another.

This means that when you switch to a new phone provider, you can keep your current phone number instead of having to get a new one.

People decide to port their number for a variety of reasons, such as switching to a new service provider, upgrading to a new phone, or simply wanting to keep the same phone number when moving to a new geographic area.

You may want to switch to a new wireless carrier without transferring mobile phone numbers. Or you could be switching from a landline home phone service to a modern landline, like a VoIP service or a Wireless home phone service.

Whatever your reasons may be, we can help phone number porting work seamlessly for you or your business.

It makes the transition to a new phone service much easier, as you won't have to worry about informing everyone of your new number or updating your contacts.

Porting your phone number

Before you switch providers and start the process of porting your phone numbers, there are a couple of tidbits of information that can make it easier. Make sure the new provider is able to support the phone number porting process.

Check eligibility requirements

These requirements vary by the phone service provider, but they usually include the following:

  • Your current service provider must support number porting.

  • Your phone number and phone service must be active and in good standing.

  • This means that you need to make sure that the number is not tied to any outstanding contract or fees with your current phone provider.

  • If there are any early termination fees or contracts, you'll need to take care of any outstanding balance before you can start the process of porting your phone number with your new carrier.

  • Your new service provider must support number porting to the area you are in.

  • Check to see if there is a porting fee if you switch services.

  • You must be the primary account holder and have the account number and billing address for both your current provider and new service providers.

How to port your existing phone number

Once you've confirmed that your current phone number is eligible for porting and the new provider supports number porting, you're ready to start the process.

Here's what you need to do:

  1. Complete port request: Contact your new phone service provider and tell them you want to keep your existing number. They will complete a local number porting request. You can request this with a mobile number or a landline number.

  2. Give new provider information: Provide the new phone provider with your current carrier name, current phone number, account number, account PIN, service address, and billing address. Keep in mind they may need some additional information, most of which can be found on your current carrier phone bill.

  3. Be patient: Wait for the new phone provider to initiate the process to port your number. The number port request can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to complete. Your new provider may give you a temporary phone number to use during this transition so you can still make and receive phone calls.

  4. Verify & use new service: Once the porting request is complete, you'll be able to start using your current phone number to make and receive calls with your new carrier. Make sure everything is working well before you cancel service with your old provider.

How to keep your phone number when switching service

While the process of porting your phone number is pretty straightforward, there are a few things to keep in mind while you port your number.

Remain active with your old provider until the new account has finished the number port.

If you cancel your service before the new provider has completed the process, you may risk losing your mobile number or landline phone number. Call the toll-free number with your account information if you encounter any issues.

Have a backup plan in case anything goes wrong during the porting process. For example, you may need to have a backup phone number that you can use in case there are any issues with the porting process.

Phone number porting FAQs

What type of phone numbers can I request to be ported?

Make sure it is eligible first, but the fact is that most types of phone numbers are able to be transferred. That means cell phone numbers, traditional landline phone numbers, VoIP provider phone numbers, etc. are all able to be ported to a different provider.

Can I port my phone number to any new phone provider?

Not all phone providers support number porting, so you'll need to make sure that the new phone provider supports number porting before you start the process.

How long does the porting process take?

The porting process can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. This can depend mostly on the different companies involved.

Will my current provider service be disrupted during the porting process?

In most cases, no. However, there may be a brief interruption in service during the switchover to the new provider, so it's best to plan accordingly.

Will my phone number change?

No, you will still have the same number after the porting process is complete. This goes for a cell phone number or landline home phone number.

What happens to my voicemail messages during porting?

Your voicemail messages will not be transferred to your new service provider. You should retrieve any important messages before initiating the process.

Can I port my phone number to a different area code?

It depends on the service providers involved and the availability of phone numbers in the new area. You should contact your new service provider for more information.


A phone number port is a great way to simplify the process of switching to a new phone provider.

By keeping your existing phone number, you won't have the added stress of updating all your family, friends, and business associates with your new contact details.

To speed up the process, just keep in mind some of the items we discussed above to make it a painless process that saves you money!