Making an international call from the United States to most nations around the world requires dialing the international direct dialing number, the nation code, the area code and the individual telephone number of the person or organization. Within the United States, the international direct dialing code is 011.
Nation codes vary widely, but most of these codes are easily found on the Internet. With all the necessary codes in hand, making an international call is the very much the same as making a long-distance call to another state. All the codes and numbers are entered sequentially, from most broad to most specific. For instance, if a person is calling Berlin, Germany, she first dials 011 to specify that she is making an international call. After entering the international direct dialing number, she enters 49, Germany's country code, followed by 30, Berlin's area code. Finally, she enters the specific telephone number of the person or institution she is trying to reach.
The rates telephone providers charge for making international calls are typically very high. Calling cards for specific countries are widely available to offset these charges. These cards allow calling individual countries at rates far below what most telecommunications providers charge. International calling cards often require special dialing methods, but most print this information either on literature accompanying the card or directly on the card itself.