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Burnaby, B.C. - For residents and businesses in the Lower Mainland, May 1 marks the end of long distance charges for all telephone calls within the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD). Some customers' telecommunication-related equipment may need reprogramming as a result.


TELUS's new Greater Vancouver free local calling area, approved by the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) last December, includes all communities of the GVRD from Aldergrove to Bowen Island.


Starting in May, residential customers of TELUS in Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster and Richmond communities that currently have the largest local-calling area will see an increase of 25 cents on their monthly telephone bill.


Residential customers in other communities of the GVRD, including Aldergrove, Anmore, Belcarra, Bowen Island, Coquitlam, Cloverdale, Delta, Fort Langley, Langley City and Municipality, Lion's Bay, Maple Ridge, the City and District of North Vancouver, Pitt Meadows, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Surrey, West Vancouver and White Rock, will see a 70-cent increase on their monthly telephone bill for a significant expansion of their local-calling area.


Business customers can expect an overall reduction of local service rates in the Greater Vancouver region. The cost of expanding the local-calling area for business is being offset by local service price reductions for business that TELUS has submitted to the CRTC.


Customers in the Lower Mainland with fax machines, PBX switchboard equipment that uses network automatic route selection, modems, speed dialing lists, call forwarding, or other equipment that automatically dials 1-604 before dialing certain numbers within the new free calling area may have to reprogram their equipment to treat such numbers as a local call after May 1.


"The expansion of our free-calling area is something our customers have wanted for a long time. It benefits everyone in the Greater Vancouver area," said Jim Brookes, TELUS vice president of Local and Enhanced Services. "A single local-calling area removes the long distance barrier to communication. This should encourage business development and job creation throughout the Lower Mainland."


For more information about the Greater Vancouver expanded local-calling area, including maps illustrating the changes for each area of the GVRD, visit our Web site at


For more information, please contact:

Doug Strachan