How to Stop Nuisance Calls - Call Blocking Phones Buying Guide

Call Blocking Phones Buying Guide

If you are tired of receiving nuisance calls, then it's well worth considering purchasing a cordless phone with call blocking features. These can make a huge difference to your everyday life, dramatically cutting down the number of cold calls to your landline. They can also save a fair amount of space on your answer machine, which won't be taken up with automated messages. However, these call blocking features can vary from one model to the next. While some may be suited to your individual needs, others might not be fit for purpose. For this reason, it's worth considering the various types of nuisance calls. Find out which are problematic for you, and you can then find a phone that will help you put an end to them for good.

Types of Nuisance Calls

Live Marketing Calls

As the name suggests, these take place when someone calls to try and sell you something. Recorded message calls, meanwhile, simply play a message automatically when you pick up the phone.

Silent or Abandoned Calls

Ever picked up the phone and found there was no one on the other end? There's actually a simple reason for this. Many call centres use equipment that automatically dials one number after another, until someone picks up. However, if there are no staff available to take the call when it's connected, then the line will be silent.

Scam Phone Calls

Each year millions of consumers fall victim to scams. These scammers will often claim to be from a trusted organization, such as your bank or HMRC. Needless to say, such calls are illegal. Nevertheless, many people only find out that they have been scammed once they are out of pocket- by which point, the scammers will have taken the money and run.

Threatening or Abusive Calls

Whether from people you know or from strangers, these types of calls are a criminal offence should be reported to the police.

3 things you need to know about call blocking

1. You need Caller ID for call blocking to work

First things first, your phone needs to be able to identify incoming numbers in order to block nuisance calls. For this reason, you will need Caller ID set up with your line provider. This is a free service- in fact, in 2017 Ofcom banned providers from charging for Caller ID. For more information about this service, it's best to check with your service provider.

2. Call blocking is not the same on all phones

Phones with nuisance call blocking typically enable you to block certain types of calls (eg. international, withheld, anonymous), which account for a large proportion of unsolicited calls.

3. You can block calls from specific numbers

Some phones only allow you to block incoming calls from specific numbers. This means that you won't be protected if the number is withheld. However, many others can also block all incoming calls from withheld numbers.

The best brands for blocking unwanted calls

Not all cordless phones are made equal when it comes to protecting your home from nuisance calls. Some brands fare better than others and this is our selection (based on our own tests, independent reviews from the likes of Which?, and customer feedback) of the best out there:

1. BT

They were one of the first manufacturers to introduce advanced call blocking features to their phones, and are number 1 on our list for the variety of models with Call Blocking and their effectiveness. Most BT phones also come with a Do Not Disturb feature, which means you can program the handset not to ring at certain times of the day (or night) so you can be sure there will be no unwelcome disturbances (and can set VIP privileges so those most important to you can always get through).

2. Gigaset

Gigaset are experts at what they do, so it was no surprise that their first DECT phone with Nuisance Call Blocking was the crowd-pleasing, Which? recommended Best Buy, and one of our favourites – the C620A. Thanks to this success, most of their more recent models- such as the C570A and S850A- also come with Nuisance Call Blocking.

3. Panasonic

The majority of Panasonic cordless phones benefit from a Call Barring feature, which allows you to block incoming calls from up to 30 specific numbers. Their most recent DECT phones also include Panasonic’s Nuisance Call Block, which also enables you to prevent unwanted calls from anonymous, withheld or international numbers.


We hope this buying guide has given you a clear starting point on how to find the right call blocking cordless phone for you. For information on more specific cordless phones to stop nuisance calls select from one of the Buying Guides below or start shopping for Cordless Phones now.