How to Activate Voicemail

By Taylor Patrick

Instructions for setting up voicemail vary, depending on your home-telephone service provider, or cell service provider. However, there are common steps to setting up all voicemail accounts. Before you begin, think about what you would like to say in your message to callers and write it down. Consider if you would like to use your full name or your business name, or leave an anonymous message. Decide whether you'd like to sound professional or more casual.

Things You'll Need

  • Temporary password

Step 1

Dial *98 if you're setting up voicemail for a home phone. Press 1 or *86, and then "Send," if you're setting up voicemail for a cell phone. This will take you to the voicemail operations.

Step 2

Enter your temporary password. In some cases, this will be your 10-digit phone number; in others, it will be a sequence of numbers, such as "1234." Your phone service provider should tell you what the temporary password is. You will then be asked to enter a new password that you will remember easily. Choose something that wouldn't be guessed easily by other people.

Step 3

Follow the prompts from the voicemail service to record your first and last name. You can choose to have an automatic outgoing message for callers that tells them you are unavailable, or you can record a more personalized message.

Tips & Warnings

  • It's a good idea to listen to your message after you record it, to see if it's easy to hear and understand. If you don't want to write out the message before recording it, you may want to write a list of things you want covered in the message, such as alternate ways people can get in touch with you or other people's contact information. You can record and re-record your message as many times as you like.