Online CenturyLink Voice Mail user guide

Use these step-by-step instructions to set up your service, create a password and record a greeting. If you're familiar with the basics, maybe you need to know how to access your mailbox, change your ring cycle or send group messages. If you're looking for a cheat sheet for the keypad shortcuts, that's here too ... Just scroll down.

Step 1: Start up your service

To set up your voice mail, press from your home phone or call the retrieval number from your welcome letter.

Don't have your welcome letter handy? You can find out your retrieval number by calling our automated help system at 1-800-669-7676.

Voice prompts will guide you through the steps. Take your time. Go ahead and experiment! You can always back up, change or erase anything you don't want.

Step 2: Create your password

It can be any number 4 to 15 digits long.

Be sure to make note of it because you'll need it to access your messages in the future

Step 3: Record a name to identify your mailbox

For instance, "Smith Residence" or "Jason and Kathy."

Step 4: Choose a voice mail greeting 

Most people record their own, but if it's easier, or you're security-conscious and don't want to use your own voice, use one of the built-in CenturyLink greetings.

  • Press to select the standard greeting with phone number:
    "At the tone, please record your message to [your phone number]."
  • Press for the standard greeting with your name:
    "At the tone, please record your message to [your mailbox's name]."
  • Press to record a personalized greeting, up to 3 minutes long. For example:
    "You've reached Jason & Kathy. We can't get to the phone right now, but if you leave a message we'll call you back."

Activating your phone's "message waiting" light

If your phone or Caller ID unit has a message indicator light that isn't lighting up, let us know. Call 1-866-450-6152, and we can get it activated.

Checking your messages and getting into your mailbox

Choose one of these ways to access your mailbox, and follow the voice prompts you hear.

Press

from your home phone only

Call your home phone number and

press

once your greeting starts, from any phone

Call the CenturyLink Voice Mail retrieval number

from any phone

The retrieval number is located on your welcome letter, or you can get it by calling our automated help system at 1-800-669-7676.

(*98 message retrieval may not be available in all areas.)

Changing your ring cycle

Change the number of rings before a call goes to voice mail (also known as a "ring cycle") by calling our automated help system at 1-800-669-7676.

Getting to know the keypad commands

When listening to your messages, use these shortcut keys:

You can control message playback by pressing the desired number under the commands shown on the left in green.

You can rewind to catch something you didn't hear by pressing . For extra control, press (or twice) to rewind to the beginning of a message, or (or twice) to skip to the end.

Can hardly hear the message? Turn up the volume by pressing .

Someone's talking too fast? Slow it down with .

Want to skip the messages that aren't for you? Just press and cruise on by.


After you listen to each message:

  • The commands shown above in blue are available.
  • Choose to erase the message, to save it for later, or to skip it.
  • Save time with Call Return. Just after listening to a message to automatically dial the number of the person who called. No more scratch paper or listening to the message over and over to get the number! This time saver is FREE and is available for most local calls.(However, it does not work if the caller has Caller ID Blocking.)

Replying to (or forwarding) messages

Here are a couple of special things you can try with other people who also have CenturyLink Voice Mail. (Some limitations may apply depending upon customer phone facilities.)

Press after listening to a message to forward a copy of it to another person's voice mailbox. For example, you get a message at home that you want to forward to your neighbor, or your children share time in 2 households. Whenever a message arrives for them, just press to forward it on.

Press to send a reply message directly back to the person who called you. Let's say it's late at night and you don't want to ring the person's phone. Maybe you just don't want to talk right now, but you still want to answer their message. No problem! Just press to automatically leave a reply message in that person's voice mailbox.

Press to record and send a message directly to another CenturyLink mailbox without ringing their phone. Or, you can even record a message for someone in your household and send it to your own number. (Some limitations may apply depending upon customer phone facilities.)

You will be prompted through these steps:

  1. Record your message after the tone, then press
  2. Enter the destination mailbox number. This is the phone number of the person you're sending to. If the person doesn't have CenturyLink Voice Mail, the system will tell you it can't deliver the message.
  3. Press to send now, or press to add a delivery option (e.g., 1 for Private, 2 for Urgent).

    Press to check if the person who you sent the message to has listened to it yet. Hint: You can also use the confirmation delivery option when you send the message. (Some limitations may apply depending upon customer phone facilities.)

    Managing your "new message waiting" notification

    From the main menu, select (Mailbox Options) and then press .

    You can turn off the dial tone notification for waiting messages by pressing (to change your mailbox options) from the main menu of your CenturyLink Voice Mail box.

    If your new message notification doesn't seem to be working, try this:

    • If you have messages but aren't being notified, enter your mailbox, go to Mailbox Options (option ), and select Notification Options (option ). Follow the prompts to make sure Message Waiting Indication is ON.
    • If your new message indicator remains ON after you have cleared your messages, enter your mailbox, go to Mailbox Options (option ), and select Notifications (option ). Follow the prompts to turn the feature on and off 2 or 3 times. Be sure you end with Message Waiting Indication ON.

    Using advanced shortcuts

    From the main menu, select (Mailbox Options) and then press .

    These helpful options can be turned OFF and ON to get your messages faster.

    Press to skip or change Password -- turn ON.

    Skip the password and you won't have to enter your password when you're checking your messages from your home phone. Remember though, for your protection, you still need to enter your password anytime you're checking messages away from home.

    Press to turn Autoplay ON and OFF.

    When autoplay is turned ON and you call to listen to your messages, the messages will immediately start playing. If autoplay is OFF, then you will be presented with the main menu options to select from (e.g., - Listen, -Send).

    Press to turn Date and Time ON and OFF  

    Turn OFF the date and time so you don't hear them automatically. Whenever you really need to know, you can always press during or after the message.

    Press to Change Prompt Levels. 

    Switch to short prompts when you're ready for fewer voice instructions.

    Press to turn Welcome Chimes ON and OFF.

    If you'd like for callers to hear a "door bell"-type tone instead of a beep before they leave a voice mail message for you, then turn welcome chimes ON. If you'd rather they hear a beep, turn welcome chimes OFF.

    Sending group messages 

    From the main menu, select (Mailbox Options) and then press .

    Communicate the same information to a group of people at once -- the reunion plans, the soccer game time, work-at-home associates -- you get the idea! Since this feature only works with other CenturyLink Voice Mail users, you'll need to ask the others in your group if they also have this service.

    First, you have to make a list of phone numbers for everyone in your group. You can store up to 15 different groups with up to 25 people in each group.

    From the main menu, choose for Mailbox Options, then:

    1. Choose for Group Lists, then to create a List.
    2. Number this list 11-25, then record a name for it and press .
    3. Enter the phone numbers of your group members one at a time.

    Now you can send a message to this group. Go to Main Menu and follow the Send instructions, entering the Group List number (11-25) for the destination, then press .

    Creating extension mailboxes (press )

    This service gives you 1 main mailbox plus 3 personal extensions so that different household members can receive private messages. Additional fees apply. For information, see the Extension Mailboxes user guide.

    Retrieving messages from another CenturyLink box

    From the main menu, press (Mailbox Options) and then press .

    This is a handy feature if you're checking messages away from home. Let's say you're dialing your retrieval number from a neighbor's phone, who also has CenturyLink Voice Mail. As soon as you hear their voice mail prompts, press and enter your 10-digit phone number and password to access your mailbox.


    For a printable reference guide, download the CenturyLink Voice Mail user guide.

    To add or change the calling features on your account, chat with us.