Toll Free Number

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Any business wants to provide hassle-free communication to its customers and the first thing that comes to mind is a toll-free number.

According to FCC, world wide the Toll-free numbers begin with one of the following three-digit codes: 888,877,800, 888, 877, 866, or 844. These numbers/codes are not interchangeable, example 1-800-200-0820 is not the same number as 1-888-200-0820 calls to each toll-free number are routed to a mapped local telephone number or mobile phone number.

What Is Toll-Free Number?

Let’s Look At A Few Facts And Relevant Use Case.

  • It is an 11-digit number “18XX-XXX-XXXX”
  • It’s a front-facing number, and needs to be mapped to a landline or mobile number where each call will land. According to business needs, calls can be routed to multiple locations.
  • One cannot make outgoing calls from a Toll-Free Number.
  • As the name suggests, the calling party does not have to pay any charges and is borne by the called party i.e. the organization owning the toll-Free Number
  • In partial TFN ( 1860 numbers) the business pays for carrying the call to a centralized location ( STD charges delta component ) while the customer who calls the number pays for local call charges ( same as calling a local landline number). In this day and age of flat call charges across the country, telco’s are offering flat per-minute charges to businesses on 1860 numbers as well.
  • A single number is accessible throughout India, no STD facility is required to access the service. TFN is a region agnostic and can be procured from anywhere on a pan India basis.
  • Acquiring a Toll-Free no . is more expensive than a normal business landline number and comes with a one-time cost, security deposit, and monthly fixed charges.
  • SMS Service – In the US, you can also send text messages to a toll-free number, the number should be so “text-enabled,” and businesses can also reply to the text messages. In India, you cannot send a message to a Toll-Free Number.

Services availed on a Toll-Free Number:

 The toll-free number comes with a simple IVR, call routing, call monitoring, call analytics, etc. Many cloud telephony companies also provide these services. ✔ Calls landing on the TFN can be routed to any landline or mobile number. Here it is advisable to check for inter-connectivity if the landline is from a different provider compared to the TFN.

Advantages & Additional Features

Business Advantages
  1. Increase customer satisfaction by ensuring that your business is always reachable.
  2. Routing preferences can be defined/chosen/change anytime.
  3. Receive incoming calls from any service provider, anywhere.
  4. Fall back number can be configured in case the Primary number is down.
  5. Cost to Customer is Free and Cost to Company is “Full cost”

Toll-Free Number further helps small businesses that cannot invest in advertising on a mass-scale. Recent studies have highlighted the fact that 28% of television commercials feature toll-free numbers as a point of direct response.

Additional Features
  • 1. Circle/Geography based routing — for Real-time customized call treatment
  • 2. Proportional call distribution – to balance call load at various locations
  • 3. Condition based routing – Caller never hears a busy signal; No calls are missed.


With the emergence of cloud telephony, all the toll-free service can be availed on a landline number

Landline Number

Toll-Free Number


 Can’t start toll-free service customers have to pay for the call

Customers don’t have to pay for calls

Initial cost & monthly rental

Don’t have to pay any extra charge

Have to pay a one-time fee, security deposit and fixed monthly rental

Call Charge

Call charges are very nominal varies between 40p/min to 60p/min

Call charges are higher, it depends on service provide generally varies between Re1/min to Rs1.5/min


All the services of a toll-free number can be availed on a landline number

All service – start IVR, call recording and other call center features

Target Company

Small and mid-sized company

Large-sized B2C companies, having PAN India presence

In the age of marketing, many companies also look for vanity or fancy numbers.

VanityToll-Free Number
DefinitionIt is a special sequence of number i.e is easy to remember, it can be a landline number, mobile or a toll-free number i.e 9322322322, 9123123123, 1800-123-4567It is an 800, 888, 877, 866, 855, and 844 sequences of number.
CostIt is very costly, due to high demand many times telco’s auction these numbers.
Fixed cost is associated with the number
ServiceAll the services of a toll-free number can be availed on a fancy number
All service – start IVR, call recording and other call center features

All the telecom service operators and few cloud telephony companies provide toll-free numbers. It is advisable to acquire the toll-free number from a telecom operator and possess its ownership.

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