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How to keep phone number w/o paying for service (parking).

Posted on 2014-11-10
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Last Modified: 2014-11-10
I have a phone number that I used for a former business.  Its a nice number with multiple repeating characters. I want to keep the number for a future business, but I don't want to pay for service to keep it reserved.

Any there any services out there that will park a phone number like a web address can be parked ?

Thanks
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Question by:sidwelle
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6 Comments
 
LVL 95

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40432979
If it is your phone number, you can change your device to this phone number and have it.

If you just want it held, you have to pay to park it, or else lose it.
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:Phillip Burton
ID: 40432991
Why don't you switch to pay-as-you-go, and use an ultra-cheap one?
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 40433071
Yes, I am looking for a "Pay to Park" service.  My carrier stated this can't be done, but I don't believe them.

Any suggestions ?
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Accepted Solution

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Frosty555 earned 500 total points
ID: 40433371
Some VOIP providers allow you to pay for DIDs or "Direct Inward Dialing Numbers", aka the "phone number", separately from the "trunk service" (e.g. the minutes used for inbound or outbound calls).  

You can port your number over to one of those VoIP service providers.

My personal recommendation is www.voip.ms - they charge about $2/month for a DID, and ~1c/minute for any calls in or out to north america, pay as you go, no contracts or minimums. You top up your account via PayPal or CC, and they deduct from that balance. VoIP.ms is entirely online (support is via online chat and email), is quite cheap, and they provide a good service. Their focus is very "open source" - providing you with maximum control, even if that results in you shooting yourself in the foot. So read the manuals and wiki.

For the port request to succeed you MUST still possess the phone number on a valid account in good standing with your old provider (the "losing carrier"). If you cancel the account or refuse to pay your bills you'll lose the number.

Rough steps:

1) Do NOT cancel anything with the losing carrier
2) Sign up at www.voip.ms, activate your account
3) Put a $25 balance on the account via PayPal
4) Look around and familiarize yourself with the options and menu system. The menus are a little slow, don't worry and be patient. Read the Wiki. Research.
4) Begin a "DID Port Request" via the "DID Portability" menu
5) Follow instructions, providing scanned copies of your bill with your signature on it, billing information, etc., ask questions via the Online Chat if you aren't sure.
6) VoIP.ms begins the port request, asking the losing carrier to relinquish the number. This will prompt the losing carrier to cancel your account
7) If the losing carrier cooperates, the number is ported into your VoIP.ms account. If they don't, VoIP.ms staff will contact you via email and you can work it out
8) Configure the routing for the number in the "Manage DIDs" section - configure which VoIP.ms servers will handle the number and where it will route to. You can configure it to forward calls to another number, or go to an IVR, recorded announcements, go to voicemail, etc. all via the VoIP.ms menus. Use the Online Chat if you run into trouble.
9) After verifying the number is in your VoIP.ms account call the losing carrier and make sure your account is closed

10) KEEP ON-TOP OF YOUR BALANCE. Top it up when it starts to run low.

X) If you feel like getting fancy, VoIP.ms supports you running your own open source Asterisk SIP server or IP phones to place calls. Register multiple DIDs, configure them to ring your server, host conference calls, and all sorts of cool stuff. Set up your own FreePBX Server, 3CX server, or buy a hardware PBX such as a GrandStream or Cisco appliance. Learn about SIP, VoIP, and IP telephony. Learn about Asterisk, and play around. And of course, whack your head on the wall repeatedly trying to make it all work.
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 40433648
Good info, is this the only service that provides this  ?  Just wanted to compare a few.
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Author Closing Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 40434121
Signed up w/Voip.ms.  support states that it takes 2 weeks to get the number ported.

only $1/month if you don't allow incoming or outgoing calls.

I will post back if I have any problems.
FYI, setup is pretty cryptic.
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