Telephone numbers in Bulgaria

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Telephone numbers in Bulgaria
NSN length8 (9 for mobile numbers)
Format(02) xxx xxxx (Sofia)
(0xx) xx xxxx
(0xxx) xxxxx
(0xxxx) xxxx
08z xxx xxxx (mobiles)
0800 xxxxx (freephone)
Access codes
Country code+359
International access00

Telephone numbers in Bulgaria are under a full number dialing plan, meaning that the full national number must be dialed for all calls, while it retains the trunk code, '0', for all national dialling. Area codes are prefixed with a trunk code of 0 only when dialled domestically.

For example, to call a number in Sofia, dial:

  • 02 xxx xxxx from a landline in Sofia
  • 02 xxx xxxx from outside Sofia but in Bulgaria
  • +359 2 xxx xxxx from outside Bulgaria

Fixed-line numbers[edit]

Domestic numbers are limited to eight digits in length. Area codes vary in length from one to five digits. Subscriber number lengths vary accordingly, from seven digits down to three digits. Sofia lines on digital switches have seven-digit numbers, those on analog switches had six; in Plovdiv, Varna and Ruse both are six digits; and in most other province capitals lines on digital switches have six-digit numbers and analog had five.

For a very long time, the state-owned Bulgarian Telecommunications Company (BTC) had a monopoly on fixed telephone networks. However, this ended when a special law was adopted. BTC was privatized in 2004 and competing operators appeared.

Larger areas, such as Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna, and Burgas, are subdivided into zones. Although one cannot further reduce the number of dialed digits, the number itself shows which zone it is located in. For example, in Sofia, numbers starting with 2, 82, 92 are located in the Western suburbs, 7, 87, 97 in the Eastern suburbs, and 98 in the central area.

Around 2010 [when?], the intensive process of replacing the old analog switches with modern digital ones completed. In some areas it is even possible to guess if a subscriber number was changed from analog to digital during its existence or was subscribed as digital initially. For example, in Blagoevgrad a number starting with 88 was subscribed as digital, and a number starting with a single 8 was analog before.

The first digit also shows if a particular subscriber number is operated by BTC or another operator.

The area codes are always cited with the trunk code. When dialing all subscriber numbers must be prefixed with trunk and area code except short codes (see below). Numbers starting with 700, 800 and 90x as well as mobile ones are prefixed by '0' only. However, when dialing from abroad, the trunk code '0' must be replaced with the country code '+359'.

Mobile numbers[edit]

Until 20 July 2003 GSM networks used six-digit subscriber numbers in accordance with the limit of eight digits for the domestic part of a number. With the increase of subscribers (and an international requirement), all (except Vivacom, which started operations in 2006) acquired new access codes. On 20 July 2003, Mobiltel used three codes ((0)87, (0)88, (0)89) and Globul used two ((0)98 and (0)99). When these limits were also to be overwhelmed, seven-digit subscriber numbers and single access codes per operator were introduced, hence M-tel (now A1) reverted to 088 (+7 digits) only, while Globul (now Yettel) took the old M-tel code 089 (+7 digits), and the rest were freed up. (Mobikom had gone through a similar change in the mid-90s – from (0)799 to (0)48).

This change provokes an error in citing mobile numbers, quite similar to that of erroneous UK telephone codes. The first digit of the subscriber number is most often cited as part of the access code, e.g. (0)887 XXX XXX, instead of the correct (0)88 7XX XXXX. This error remains for new subscriber numbers even for Vivacom (which entered the market with the 087 (+7 digits) code and has always remained so). However, unlike the situation in UK, this error has no effect since a mobile number must always be dialled with the access code.

Dialing to a mobile network requires the access code together with the 0. Dialing from a mobile network requires either an area or access code with the trunk or international format ((0)YY YXXX XXX or +359 YY YXXX XXX). The latter becomes a normal practice, since most people use number lists of their handsets, more people use their phones in roaming and all four operators show the caller ID in international format.

The number 088 8888 888 (formerly 0888 888 888 or +359 88 888 8888) was linked to three deaths in the early 2000s,[1] leading M-tel to suspend use of the number from service.

Area codes[edit]

As in many countries, an area code is often written with the dialing code 0 pretended as if it were part of the area code itself.

Code Area or service
17x Paging services (six digits, not active: 177: Link Paging, 178: Varna Page, 179: Mobipage)
2 Sofia
30x Smolyan Province codes (301: Smolyan, 309: Pamporovo)
31x Plovdiv Province codes
32 Plovdiv
33x Plovdiv Province codes (331: Asenovgrad)
34 Pazardzhik
35x Pazardzhik Province codes (350: Peshtera, 359: Velingrad)
36x Kardzhali Province codes (361: Kardzhali)
37x Haskovo Province codes (373: Harmanli, 379: Svilengrad)
38 Haskovo
39x Haskovo Province codes (391: Dimitrovgrad)
41x Stara Zagora Province codes (416: Chirpan)
42 Stara Zagora
430 Tetra mobile network
43x Stara Zagora Province codes (431: Kazanlak)
44 Silven
45x Sliven Province codes (453: Kotel, 457: Nova Zagora, 454: Tvarditza)
46 Yambol
47x Yambol and Haskovo Provinces codes (470: Topolovgrad, 478: Elhovo)
48 NMT mobile network Mobikom (six digits), disused
51x Varna Province codes (518: Provadiya, 519: Devnya)
52 Varna
53x Shumen Province codes (537: Novi Pazar, 538: Veliki Preslav)
54 Shumen
55x Burgas Province codes (550: Sinemorets, 554: Nesebar)
56 Burgas
57x Dobrich Province codes (570: Kavarna, 579: Balchik)
58 Dobrich
59x Burgas Province codes (590: Ahtopol, 596: Pomorie)
60x Targovishte Province codes (601: Targovishte, 608: Popovo)
61x Veliko Tarnovo Province codes (610: Pavlikeni, 618 Gorna Oryahovitza)
62 Veliko Tarnovo
63x Veliko Tarnovo and Pleven Provinces codes (631: Svishtov)
64 Pleven
65x Pleven Province codes (650: Levski, 658: Belene)
66 Gabrovo
67x Gabrovo and Lovech Provinces codes (670: Troyan, 675: Sevlievo)
68 Lovech
69x Lovech Province codes (697: Lukovit)
700 Local rate numbers (five digits)
70x Kyustendil Province codes (701: Dupnitsa, 702: Bobov Dol, 707: Sapareva Banya)
71xx Sofia Province codes (718: Koprivshtitsa, 720: Etropole, 721: Kostinbrod, 722: Samokov, 723: Botevgrad, 726: Svoge, 729: Godech)
73 Blagoevgrad
74x Blagoevgrad Province codes (745: Petrich, 746: Sandanski, 747: Razlog, 749: Bansko)
75x Blagoevgrad and Sofia Provinces codes (750: Borovets, 751: Gotse Delchev)
76 Pernik
77x Pernik Province codes (777: Radomir)
78 Kyustendil
79xx Kyustendil Province codes
799 NMT mobile network Mobikom, disused, replaced by 048
800 Toll free numbers (five digits)
81x Ruse Province codes (817: Byala)
82 Ruse
84 Razgrad
86 Silistra
87 GSM/UMTS mobile network Vivacom (seven digits) *
88 GSM/UMTS mobile network A1 (seven digits)
89 GSM/UMTS mobile network Yettel (seven digits) *
90x[2] Value added services (five digits)
91x Vratsa Province codes (910: Mezdra, 915: Byala Slatina)
92 Vratsa
93x Vidin Province codes (936: Belogradchik, 938: Kula)
94 Vidin
95x Montana Province codes (953: Berkovitsa)
96 Montana
97x Vratsa and Montana Province codes (971: Lom, 973: Kozloduy)
98 MVNOs on GSM/UMTS mobile network A1 (seven digits) †
999 LTE/WiMAX network MAX Telecom[3]

* Until 2003, the codes 089 and 087 were used by M-TelUntil 2003, the codes 098 and 099 were used by Telenor – see above.

Short codes[edit]

Code Service
112 emergency
120 wake up call
121 operator for long-distance calls within Bulgaria
123 operator for international calls
124 operator for international calls
125 operator for international calls
130 phone lines problems
143 emergency road service & road assistance
144 telephone information service
146 emergency road service & road assistance
147 area codes within Bulgaria
148 area codes within Bulgaria
149 area codes within Bulgaria
152 BTC local calls rates
153 BTC long-distance within Bulgaria calls rates
154 BTC international calls rates
157 BTC international calls rates
159 cultural events guide
164 shipping information (in Bourgas and Varna)
167 horoscope
168 National Radio schedule
169 horoscope
170 BTC assistance
171 theater schedule (by city)
172 currency exchange rates
173 tales for kids
174 trains time-table (by city)
175 weather forecast
176 BTC information
177 tales for kids
178 pharmacy information
179 currency exchange rates
180 time service
181 TV programs
182 tramp shipping information (in Bourgas and Varna)
183 ocean shipping information (in Bourgas and Varna)
184 tanker shipping information (in Bourgas and Varna)
185 line shipping information (in Bourgas and Varna)
186 BTC digital services information
187 send a telegram
188 TV programs
190 BTC rates guide
191 cinema schedule (by city)
192 TV programs
193 TV programs
194 TV programs
195 sport news
196 sport lottery results
197 international dialing codes
198 BTC terms of payment
199 automatic telephone information guide


  1. ^ "Spooky! There's a reason why the phone number 0888 888 888 has been suspended — all its users are dead". 27 October 2016.
  2. ^ "Услуги с Добавена Стойност |". Retrieved 2018-06-08.
  3. ^ "Max to offer voice services over OTT platform?". Telegeography. 4 December 2014. Retrieved 10 January 2015.