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How To Forward Your Phone Lines

 

Being able to forward your phone lines is a basic, but crucial part of many jobs in all different types of offices. Follow the steps laid out here to learn how to forward your phones.

This is a picture of a pair of hands operating an office phone as they forward their phone lines

Any phone line can be forwarded. You just have to know how to do it. The first step is to set up basic call forwarding on your phone line (either land or wireless). To do so, you must first contact your current service provider. In general, here are some guidelines that you can follow to successfully forward your phone line:

SETTING UP BASIC CALL FORWARDING

In order to forward your existing phone line(s) you will need to set up a call forwarding routine. There are several different possibilities available to you. Call forwarding can be used to have all of your inbound calls directed to another number or to a professional  telephone answering service or a hosted auto attendant and so on. Typically, you must contact your local phone provider to arrange for call forwarding.

  1. Variable Call Forwarding — There are several variations to this depending on your local provider. Usually, calls are forwarded by pressing *72 on your phone and then entering the forwarding number. Press *73 to un-forward your line. Most local providers offer this feature.
  2. Call Forward Busy (CF/B) — When you order this type of call forwarding from your local provider, your provider will forward calls to the telephone number of your choice in the event that your primary line rings busy.
  3. Call Forward Don’t Answer (CF/DA) — When you order this type of call forwarding from your local provider, your provider will forward calls to the telephone number of your choice in the event that your primary line is unanswered after so many rings.
  4. Call Forward Busy/Don’t Answer (CF/B/DA) — This is a combination of “call forward busy” and “call forward don’t answer.” Your line will be forwarded in the event that your primary line is either busy or unanswered.
  5. Remote Call Forwarding (RCF) and Remote Access Call Forwarding (RACF) — In both cases, RCF and RACF numbers are owned by your local provider and do not ring into a physical location. Be aware of line capacity restrictions (see below).
  6. RCF — You order a number from your local provider and the local provider direct all calls to a telephone number of your choice.
  7. RACF – You order a number from your local provider and then they give you a PIN code so that you can direct all calls to a telephone number of your choice, anytime you want from any touch-tone phone.

LINE CAPACITY RESTRICTIONS

There are a wide variety of differences in call forwarding packages offered by local providers. Therefore, it is important to ask your local provider questions before making your choice. Often, this information is published in the front of your yellow pages directory.

1.    How many calls can be forwarded at once? This is the most important question to ask your provider. When call forwarding with (CF/B/DA), for example, many local providers will allow many calls to be transferred simultaneously. If the provider only allows one call to pass through your lines at a time, this would potentially cause a bottleneck and your callers would hear a busy signal depending on your call volume. If you are forwarding to a live telephone answering service or an auto attendant, this would be a major problem for you. Most folks require at least three (3) calls to pass through their lines simultaneously in order for call forwarding to work effectively. Remote Call Forwarding lines (RCF and RACF) are notorious for only allowing one (1) call to pass through the line at a time. Often, local providers will give you additional line capacity (also known as “paths”) but they will bill you for this.

2.    How much does it cost? Call forwarding is not free, but it’s also not expensive. You will need to ask your provider what each type of call forwarding package will cost. You will find that packages generally range between $2 and $7 per month. Additional “paths” can be more costly. They can cost $15/month per path or more.

SPECIFIC CARRIER FORWARDING

Below is a series of call forwarding instructions for some of the major phone carriers. These call forwarding routines can be used in conjunction with your professional live answering service or hosted auto attendant services.

AT&T

To forward calls to another number

1. Push either 72# or *72. Dial 1172 on a rotary phone if that’s more your style.

2. Listen for dial tone.

3. Dial the number to receive your forwarded calls.

4. Two short tones, followed by ringing, confirms your request

5. When the called number is answered, Call Forwarding is on.

6. If no one answers or the line is busy, repeat steps 1-4. This will set up Call Forwarding without anyone answering at the called number.

To cancel Call Forwarding

1. Push 73# or *73. Dial 1173 on a rotary phone.

2. Two tones indicate that Call Forwarding is cancelled.

CenturyLink (formerly Qwest)

To activate Call Forwarding Variable:

1. Dial *72 or #72 from a touchtone telephone (72 from a rotary telephone).

2. Listen for second dial tone.

3. Dial the Call Forwarding Number.

To deactivate Call Forwarding Variable:

1. Dial *73 or #73 from a touchtone telephone (73 from a rotary telephone).

2. When you hear two quick tones followed by dial tone, calls are no longer forwarded.

To verify Call Forwarding Variable is in effect:

1. Dial *72 or #72 from a touchtone telephone (72 from a rotary telephone).

2. A busy signal or error announcement confirms that Call Forwarding Variable is in effect.

AZ, CO, MN, MT, OR, WA ONLY:

Call Forwarding Variable Without Call Completion is a feature of Call Forwarding Variable that allows the end-user to activate Call Forwarding Variable without waiting for the Call Forward Number to answer and without making a second attempt to activate the feature. When the activation tone is heard that confirms Call Forwarding Variable is in effect, simply hang up.

VERIZON

To activate Call Forwarding Variable:

1. Dial *72 or #72 from a touchtone telephone (72 from a rotary telephone).

2. Listen for second dial tone.

3. Dial the Call Forwarding Number.

To deactivate Call Forwarding Variable:

1. Dial *73 or #73 from a touchtone telephone (73 from a rotary telephone).

2. When you hear two quick tones followed by dial tone, calls are no longer forwarded.

 SBC

To Activate

1. Dial the number you want to forward calls to. When the call is answered, Call Forwarding will be activated.

2. If no one answers or the line is busy, press 72# again, redial the number and Call Forwarding will be activated.

To Stop

1. To stop forwarding calls, press 73# on your home phone.

2. You’ll hear two short tones followed by a dial tone. Call Forwarding is now deactivated.

To Deactivate

1. To activate Call Forwarding, press 72#

WIRELESS CARRIER FORWARDING

Typically, the call forwarding routines used for land lines are the same using mobile devices. However, your carrier may have slight differences because the SEND button must be used rather than just hanging up the phone. Contact your wireless carrier for more instructions.

If you’d like some help, we would be more than happy to assist  you in getting your Call Forwarding set up.

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This entry was posted in Cloud Based Phone Services, IT, Mobile Phone Applications, Technology, Telecommunications and tagged , by Brian Gabriel. Bookmark the permalink.

About Brian Gabriel

As the Call Center Manager for Sound Telecom, Brian is responsible for overseeing the daily operations and long term success of the company while managing a variety of inbound customer support programs. He also has a hand in taking care of the Solaxis services division. Prior to joining Sound Telecom, Mr. Gabriel held management positions with several prominent Internet Services companies including XpenseWise.com and Greatfood.com. Brian started his career in advertising and sales before moving to Washington State. He joined AEI Music in 1995 and supervised their international customer service department and technical support call centers. Brian received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism with a minor in Spanish languages from San Diego State University. Brian teaches adult education at his church and actively supports Christian ministries.