Transfer (port) US cell phone number to Canada

Has anyone ported their US cell number to Canada?
Is it even allowed?

I have heard folks move to Google Voice in US to retain their number, but can we port it to a Canadian provider later?

Appreciate your experiences.


Hi, I am in a similar situation. Would like to know if you were able to figure this out. Would really appreciate your help in this matter.

You can’t do that (port your number).

Even though both Canada and the United states are on the North American Numbering plan and share the same country code, they have distinct area codes (The first 3 digits of the phone number). A provider can only port in a number to an area code that they are licensed to operate in. None of the Canadian Telecom providers are licensed to operate in the US and vice-versa.

The best you can do is with a VOIP provider + Google Voice. The general idea is outlined as a FYI below -

  • Step 1 - Port your phone number into Google Voice or get a new Goolge Voice number and share with your contacts
  • Step 2 - Create an account with a VOIP provider that allows call forwarding globally and get a US number with them
  • Step 3 - Get a Canadian phone number and have the VOIP provider from step 2 forward calls to that number
  • Step 4 - Setup google voice to point to your VOIP provider US number

Now I did say that you couldn’t port your number over but you could potentially retain your US number by continuing with a US cell plan. Some options are

  • Google Project Fi
  • Tmobile Magenta
  • AT&T Prepaid/Postpaid

None of these are for long term use exclusively outside the US but how often these terms are actually enforced is anybody’s guess.

1 Like

Does anyone know if Google Voice can receive text messages? I need text and voice. I don’t might just using it over WIFI. I mostly work from home
I’m ok to spend couple of more dollars to retain my number and get text/voice.
What is best plan in this scenario?

Heard it can receive regular text messsges, but not from banks, like passcodes, etc. . It’s all hearsay, haven’t tested it myself

Do you know any reliable provider that can still get text messages from banks? That is my main requirement as i still maintain and plan no to offload my assets in US

I have been using Google voice for 1.5 years since I moved to India and wanted to retain my US number. I do get text messages but not from banks. In order to receive messages from banks, the Google voice number needs to be linked to a number with the carrier. I have email alerts set up for the banks and receive the rest of the texts/calls on Google voice.

We recently tried to use google voice app and it says its not available in your country (canada). how did you get over it?

I have been using it through the URL -

You need to use a VPN, you can only sign up with Goolge voice in the USA. After you are setup, you can use it anywhere.