10 Correct Abbreviations for “Phone Number”

We all want to find that perfect abbreviation to fit into an elegant business card. Telephone numbers are always abbreviated, but it would help to know which variations are correct before using them. This article will explain all the best ones out there.

Correct Abbreviations for “Phone Number”

The preferred abbreviations include “tel:” “cell:” and “mob:” These all work really well to show that you’re sharing a number. As long as the telephone number directly follows the colon, you’ll be able to use these efficiently on any business card format you want.


“Tel:” is a great choice. It’s one of the best out there because it’s one of the most widely-recognized options. As time goes on, it is becoming less popular, but it still holds strong at the top right now.

Why is “tel:” becoming less popular? It mainly comes down to the usage of phones today. Most people don’t use “telephones” anymore as they are closely related to landline phones or home phone numbers.

Instead, most people use mobile or cell phones (depending on where you are in the world). These abbreviations tend to see more usage in today’s world because of how common they are.

Nevertheless, “tel:” still covers both a cell and a mobile number. “Telephone” is a blanket term that can be applied to almost any type of phone number.

It’s also a great abbreviation for the most formal of situations. If you have a particularly upper-class business, or you want to highlight the formality of your business card, it’s worth using this abbreviation.


“Cell:” is a great abbreviation, though many people don’t even consider it an abbreviation. It comes from the longer word “cellular” (from “cellular phone”). However, “cell phone” is much more common today, so it makes more sense to use it in this way.

Since “cell phone” is so popular, there is no ambiguity when it comes to using “cell:” If this is the abbreviation you want to use, it’s going to allow you to show US speakers that you are referring to your mobile number.

You might have noticed how we mentioned US speakers. It’s likely for natives outside of the US to understand what “cell:” means, but it’s not a common phrase. US English prefers “cell phone” while British English prefers “mobile phone.”

As long as you remember which is which, you should have an easier time understanding them both. Make sure you use the appropriate abbreviation based on where your business is based.

There isn’t much point in using “cell:” if you’re based in Britain. Likewise, “mob:” isn’t as good in the USA when “cell:” is already a suitable option.

  • Cell: (029) 203-3039


“Mob:” is the abbreviation for “mobile.” This is a very common one that is seen in countries outside of the US. It’s particularly common in Britain, where “mobile phone” is a phrase used to refer to handheld devices.

The number is often included straight after the colon here, making it much easier to understand the point of the abbreviation.

You don’t have to worry about explaining it either. If you have given your business card to someone and it contains this abbreviation, you can be certain that they’ll understand what they’re looking at.

If they’re interested, they’ll call you. Now they have your mobile number; you can guarantee that they’ll give you a ring if they fancy it.

  • Mob: (+44)72939 105410


“No.:” is a great abbreviation that most people overlook. It works well to abbreviate “number.” It is a Latin abbreviation (for the term “numero”). While the “O” isn’t used in the English form, it’s still a very common abbreviation that many people recognize.

Some people might overlook using “no.:” themselves because they’re worried it’ll be misconstrued. After all, we don’t spell it “nomber.” Some believe that it would make more sense to use “Nu.:” but we don’t recommend this in any circumstance.

Formally, most people are going to recognize “No.:” with no issues. The period is required after the “O” to show that it’s an abbreviation.

Sure, some people might not be aware that “No.” actually comes from the Latin “numero” (meaning “number”), but that information isn’t required to understand the abbreviation.

As long as there is a contactable number after the abbreviation, you can guarantee that people will understand what you mean.

The “O” is important here as well, try and avoid writing a simple “N.:” While it can still be used to abbreviate “number,” it’s not something that most people are familiar or comfortable with.

  • No.: (202) 439-2033


“Phone:” technically isn’t an abbreviation at all. However, it’s still a very popular choice when it comes to including your number on a business card. There is no ambiguity when it comes to using “phone.” It simply presents the number without much question.

Since it is not an abbreviation, there is no need for any periods to signify that it’s a shortened word. Technically, you could say that “phone” is a shortened form of “telephone,” but there aren’t many people that use “telephone” instead of the simpler “phone” today.

Both formally and informally, “phone” has become the most popular choice over “telephone.” In writing and speaking, you’ll find that “phone” is used to talk about someone’s device over “telephone.”

According to Google Ngram Viewer, “phone” is far more popular than “telephone.” In the past, “telephone” was more popular, but that is no longer the case today. It’s also unlikely that it’ll ever be the case again.

  • Phone: (+33)7382 3049548


“#” is one of the simplest abbreviations you can use. There are no letters involved at all here. It is a simple hashtag that dictates that a number is present. Since it’s a symbol, it’s become a universal sign for a number.

This symbol will be recognized regardless of which country you’re from or the language you speak. You don’t have to worry about using “cell” or “mob” correctly. Instead, “#” simply shows that you are referring to your phone number.

If in doubt, this is by far the best choice for a business card. It is acceptable in most formal cases (as long as you’re indicating a phone number straight after it).

Since it’s commonly associated with numbers, there is no need to clarify the meaning behind your use of it. People will understand that you’ve given them your contact number without asking further questions about it.

  • #: 020 8288 9923


“Ph.:” goes back to the use of “phone.” However, this time it is abbreviated. “Ph.” takes the first two letters of the word and adds a period after them to show that they are abbreviated.

This isn’t as common as some of the other choices. Nevertheless, it’s still one that is seen in certain business cards. You should be able to use this one just fine if you want to show people what your number is.

As long as the phone number comes straight after it, you won’t have any trouble. If you change the positioning of the number or don’t include it at all, you’re more liable to cause a bit of confusion. Try not to do that!

  • Ph.: (+16)4938 204049


“T:” is an example of a deeper abbreviation than “tel:” The two abbreviations are identical, but “T” only goes by the first letter, while “tel” uses the first three letters. It’s possible to use this before a phone number whenever you want to.

The only issue you might come across with this one is that it requires a phone number to be present after the colon. If a number is not present, it might be difficult to understand what the “T” might stand for.

Fortunately, it’s very rare to see “T:” used on a business card without a number straight after it. The likelihood is that if you see “T:” without a number, it’s probably a typo or an oversight rather than a deliberate design choice.

  • T: (414) 035-4920


“C:” is a good one-letter option coming from the “cell” abbreviation. This time, “C:” is an abbreviation that only takes the first letter of “cell” (which is an abbreviation of “cellular” in itself).

It’s appropriate to use this on business cards that are directing people to call your cell phone number. If it gives them direct access to your mobile device rather than a landline, you’ll be better off using “C.”

Remember, “cell” is much more common in US English rather than in any other place. It’s better to use the “C:” abbreviation when you are operating your business within the US.

  • C: (212) 034-1297


“M:” is another one-letter option. It’s almost identical to using “Mob:” and it works really well for that reason.

Like all of the other one-letter options, it requires more clarification. As long as the mobile number comes directly after the colon, you’ll be able to make it clear that you’re referring to a mobile number rather than anything else that might begin with the letter “M.”

Remember, “mobile phone” isn’t commonly used in the US. It’s much more suited outside of the US, so “M:” is probably better outside of the US as well.

  • M: (+44)7392 193295