How to Turn Google Voice Voicemail On or Off for a Phone

One of the neat features of Google Voice is that you can use it to check voicemail messages from all of the phone numbers that you link to it, including your mobile phone, work phone, and home landline phone. But sometimes, you’ll want to be able to check your voicemails without having to go to Google Voice, especially while on the go. Many iPhone users do, as they feel they have an easier time checking their voicemails using their phone’s built-in default voicemail system.


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As such, this lesson will show you how to enable or disable forwarding to your Google Voice voicemail for any particular phone that you’ve linked to your account.

To enable or disable call forwarding from your phone to your Google Voice voicemail:

1. Log into your Google Voice account.

Go to and log into your account.

2. Access the main menu.

Click the Main Menu button in the top-left corner of the main page.

Google Voice main menu

3. Switch to the legacy version of Google Voice.

Scroll to the bottom of the pane that appears and click Legacy Google Voice.

Legacy Google Voice button

4.  Go to your settings.

Click the gear icon in the top-right corner of the page, and then click Settings.

Legacy Google Voice settings

5. View your linked phone numbers and choose the one for which you want to switch voicemail systems.

Click the Phones tab, and then click Activate Voicemail below the phone that you want your voicemails transferred to Google Voice for.

Activate Google Voicemail for phone
(Image source: WhyWeWeb)

6. Call the specific voicemail transfer code for your telecom carrier.

A box will pop up with instructions on how to complete the transfer of your voicemail function from your phone’s default system to Google Voice.

Transfer voicemail to Google voice
(Image source: ZTE USA Z-Community)

First, make sure that the telecom company listed beside “Your Carrier” is the one that provides your mobile phone service. If it isn’t, click Change Carrier and select the correct service provider.

Next, turn on your phone and dial the number that appears in the blue box, exactly as it’s shown. Place a call through to this number, and you should be all set! Click Done when you’re finished.

If you want to switch the voicemail system for your device back from Google Voice to your carrier’s default one, start by repeating steps 1 through 4. Then, when you get to step 5, after clicking the Phones tab, click Deactivate Voicemail below the phone that you want to disconnect from Google Voice’s voicemail system. Just like in step 6, a box will appear asking you to select your telecom provider and call a special number. Just change the carrier indicated if yours is different, and then place a call to the number that appears. Voila! You’re done!


Alright! Now you know how to enable or disable the auto-forwarding of missed calls on your mobile device to your Google Voice voicemail system. If you were instead looking for a way to permanently disable Google Voice by erasing your number or cancelling your account, see our tutorial here.