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How to Manually Block a Phone Number in Google Voice

How do I manually block a number in Google Voice?Whether you have an evil step-mother, a crazy ex, or an annoying company trying to sell or collect something from you, wouldn’t it be nice to proactively prevent them from calling?  Most people know that Google Voice allows you to block phone numbers once they’ve called you.  What is lesser known, is that you can also block any number you want regardless of if they’ve contacted you before.


Google Provides instructions for blocking contacts that have already called at least once in this video:

But, what if you want to block someone who has never called you before?  It’s a little different.

Google doesn’t mention it specifically, but you are able to block any number existing in your contact list.  So, all you really have to do is the following:

  1. Add the number you want to block to your contact list.
  2. Edit the contacts Google Voice settings and set it to block.

For the full instructions, read on.

Manually Blocking a Phone Number From Calling Your Google Voice

Step 1

Sign into your Gmail* account and go to your Contacts list.  Here, Click New Contact.

*You can add contacts from both Google Voice and Gmail, but I prefer doing it in Gmail.

create a new contact in gmail

Step 2

Enter in the name of the person, company, or unknown caller that you want to block.  Next, enter in the specific number(s) that you want to block.  As you are entering the contact, Gmail should automatically save it without the need to press any type of save button.

add a contact

Step 3

Now that we’ve got the contact added, we can go in and block it. 

Go to your Google Voice contacts list and then Select the contact we just added.  On that contact’s page in the right-pane, Click Edit Google Voice Settings.

select the contact you want to block edit the contacts google voice settings

Step 4

You’ll now be taken to the settings customization page.  Here, Click Edit next to “Ring Default phones.”  The menu should expand and give you two choices, Check the bottom bullet titled “Send to Voicemail,” and then use the drop-menu to change it to Block Caller.

Once you’ve done all that, Click Save at the bottom.

set ring options to block the caller and save


Congratulations!  You’ve just blocked a number in Google Voice manually, or as I like to call it: “preemptive blocking.”  Now whenever someone calls you from the number that you blocked, your phone will not ring.  Instead, the blocked caller will hear this message.

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30 Responses to How to Manually Block a Phone Number in Google Voice

  1. acupuncture June 14, 2011 at 9:32 am #

    You can also mark the number as spam. That will “block” it for all intensive purposes. Especially useful for those 800 numbers.

    I just wish Google Voice would allow you to block/spam unknown callers.

    Using GV block and spam as quieted things greatly. . . my favorite features in GV!

    • Sean September 26, 2012 at 6:50 pm #

      it is “all intents and purposes” – there is no such thing as “all intensive purposes”. Clearly you don’t read much!

      • Alex December 11, 2014 at 8:19 am #

        Grammar and spelling cops are pedantic cretins who nit pick others because they have an urge to try to appear superior even though they have nothing of substance to add
        to the discussion. Right, Sean?

        • Not Alex January 21, 2016 at 5:05 pm #

          What’s even worse are people like you that complain about it and call others “pedantic cretins.” Right, Alex?

    • Barbara Chaffinch August 5, 2016 at 8:57 am #

      Please update info on How to Manually Block a Phone Number in Google Voice that is not in your contacts list.

      The photos have changed and don’t show you how to get the job done in 2016.

  2. groovinJackman June 14, 2011 at 5:39 pm #

    Your mother-in-law bears an uncanny resemblance to King Koopa. Hope for your wife’s sake it’s not hereditary.

  3. Penny Murdock July 27, 2012 at 12:07 pm #

    THANK YOU!!! I truly needed this 🙂 You have made my life so easy now!

  4. katahdindave March 7, 2013 at 3:55 pm #

    It seems that google voice has changed, and the contacts now show as “google contacts” and they do not have the check boxes you show in step 3. any ideas if this is still possible to do now (in 2013)?


  5. Mike April 4, 2013 at 3:16 am #

    How do we do this with the new contacts system??

    • Austin Krause April 4, 2013 at 6:06 am #

      You know Mike, I looked through and it seems that Google completely removed this feature. I sent them a support email. I have no idea why they would get rid of it. Perhaps it was an oversight from the team building the new Contacts manager.

      • Mike April 4, 2013 at 6:35 am #

        Oh man

        • Jubi April 6, 2013 at 6:47 pm #

          Actually, you can. From your google voice page, simply enter the contact’s name you want to block on the search bar (located at the top, right next to Google logo).

          Then, you will see the “edit settings” option besides the contact’s name. Click on “edit settings” and you will see the “Ring Default Phones edit” and there you can choose the Send to Voicemail / Treat as Spam / Block Caller option.

          • Mike April 7, 2013 at 9:24 am #


          • Austin Krause April 7, 2013 at 9:58 am #

            Good point Jubi. Unfortunately if it would just work for contacts that have never called then we would be set. Then again, there probably isn’t much need for contacts that haven’t called before.

          • Carl September 4, 2013 at 5:06 pm #

            That is great for pulling up numbers that are no longer in my history to allow me to block them. What I really need is to be able to block a number that has never called or does not come up in history. Love to be able to take an pro active attack. My wife has a GV# and I want to add numbers that have called me to her block list so they can never call her.

          • trex005 February 3, 2014 at 10:20 am #

            I’ve read the comments that Jubi’s solution does not work for contacts never interacted with. At first I agreed but upon trying exactly how she stated, it worked perfectly.

            1) Add the contact
            2) go back to the voice home screen
            3) Type the name of the contact
            (this is where I missed it)
            4) Click the contact from the suggestions (DO NOT ACTUALLY SEARCH)
            NOW you will get the edit settings option where you can block the caller.

  6. Jubi April 9, 2013 at 11:57 am #

    Haha, true. But I have tried it using my brother-in-law’s contact number, who has never called me :P. Then I ask my sister to have her husband call me to see if GV will block his number. It works 🙂

  7. Kendra September 11, 2013 at 11:29 am #

    “Then, you will see the “edit settings” option besides the contact’s name.”

    I can’t find this. Did they change the interface again? Is there another workaround?

    • Austin Krause September 11, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

      Yup it looks like they changed it, at least for the time being. Right now the only way to block someone is to wait for them to call and then mark it as blocked in the call history.

      • Fred November 24, 2015 at 7:14 am #

        THANK YOU AUSTIN KRAUSE!!! You answered in one simple sentence what I couldn’t figure out from Google Voice, Google Voice feedback, or the above article in over a half hour.

  8. Jimmy November 23, 2013 at 9:39 am #

    Wonder what you do for butt holes who are spoofing their caller ID? I keep getting these asses spamming my FAX machine that my phone shows 0000000000 but “Voice” just says unknown. I’ve manually blocked each occurrence and also placed each in /Spam, but the calls continue to get to my FAX. Any suggestions?

  9. BobCov December 28, 2013 at 11:58 pm #

    It’s sad that companies as smart as Google purposely decapitate their products by removing obviously helpful capabilities. Who can think of a good, user-oriented reason for changes that now make it impossible to block calls before they call you? I can only think that being able to do this would “infringe” on commercial /marketing activities. But you can only complain so far because after all, how much did we pay for this service? Exactly. What needs to happen is for people to begin developing open source alternatives that we own cooperatively and are willing to pay an annual subscription fee for. I have a range of numbers I want to block, but I can’t until calls are made from within that range. What I need is a hack to fool GV into thinking these numbers have already called.

    • Alex December 11, 2014 at 8:41 am #

      BobCov, I found just such an alternative. It cost about 5 to 6 bucks a month but it is so much more powerful than Google Voice. For instance, you can pro-actively block any number you wish or you can set it so that only those already in your phone book can call you. You can spoof your outgoing caller ID to any other number you own and set it up to selectively ring though or forward to any number you wish. Plus tons more.

      I easily ported my old GV number to it, (for free), and it works well as a land-line replacement using my Obi device (or this company will supply a device for free if you need it). I love this service and it’s worked great for me so far! 🙂

      The company is called Vestalink. It may not be what you’re looking for but you can skip over and have a peek at:

      • bobcov January 22, 2016 at 1:04 am #

        Hey, I just was alerted to your reply a year and a month after you made it! Thanks much for the tip, I will check that out.

      • bobcov January 22, 2016 at 1:05 am #

        Hey, I just was alerted to your reply a year and a month after you made it! Thanks much for the tip, I will check that out. And I have to add this little bit on here because I forgot to check the email notification and thus must end up with two replies.

  10. John Chingo October 30, 2014 at 6:51 am #

    Thank you trex005 !!! As of today (10/30/14) It works with the new GV interface!

  11. Fred November 24, 2015 at 7:10 am #

    The instructions here bear absolutely no resemblance to what is actually on my screen in Google Voice. I still have no idea how to block an unwanted caller who keeps calling me at odd hours. Google Voice isn’t remotely user friendly.

  12. Net Verse June 13, 2016 at 7:28 pm #

    As of June/2016, This doesn’t work anymore with the new upgrades to google

  13. John Chingo June 14, 2016 at 1:27 pm #

    It worked for me today (6/14/16).

    • Pat September 2, 2016 at 9:31 am #

      And it worked for me today, September 2, 2016.

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