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Area codes 704 and 980 cover Charlotte and all or part of 12 surrounding counties in south-central North Carolina. Other major cities in the service area are Gastonia, Kannapolis, Concord, Mooresville, Salisbury and Statesville. The South Carolina side of the Charlotte metropolitan area is part of area code 803.
The main area code, 704, is one of the original 86 Numbering Plan Areas assigned in 1947. At that time it covered the entire state of North Carolina. In 1954, Winston-Salem and points east were split off to create area code 919, leaving 704 to cover the western half of the state from Charlotte to the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Despite Charlotte's explosive growth from the 1970s onward, this configuration remained in place for the next 44 years. In 1998, the Foothills and Blue Ridge were split off to create area code 828, leaving 704 to cover the Charlotte area.
Within two years, however, 704 was close to exhaustion once again due to the proliferation of cell phones and pagers. The supply of available numbers was limited because the Charlotte LATA spills into York and Lancaster counties in South Carolina, meaning several numbers in South Carolina's 803 weren't available for use. For this reason, 980 was created as the state's first overlay. Ten-digit dialing became mandatory on March 1, 2001; it is not known if this was implemented as a flash-cut or if permissive dialing allowed seven-digit calls to go through for a time before then.
|North Carolina area codes: 252, 336, 704, 828, 910, 919, 980|
|West: 828||704 / 980||East: 910|
|South: 803, 843|
|South Carolina area codes: 803, 843, 864|