With predictions that Idaho's 208 area code will run out of available numbers sometime in mid-2018, the PUC is taking public comments until
Tuesday, Oct. 6, on a plan from telecommunications providers
that would see a "geographic overlay" of a new area code as opposed to a "geographic split." Simply put, a new area code would be assigned to new numbers instead of dividing Idaho in two. However, the plan would require customers to dial all Idaho codes using all 10 digits (the area code and number). The proposed implementation would take about 16 months to introduce a second area code.
According to the North American Plan Numbering Administrator, only 12 states still have one area code, but second area codes are being proposed for half: Idaho, Delaware, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. Other states with one area code are Alaska, Hawaii, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming.
Today's message from the Idaho Public Utilities Commission was simple, but historic: "The days of a single area code for Idaho are coming to an end."