Last Updated on January 11, 2023 by James McAllister

By: James McAllister


Have you recently called someone, only for the call to be sent to voicemail after one ring?

Or perhaps it’s calls sent to YOUR phone that are going to voicemail after just one ring.

Although this isn’t something that happens that often, there is usually a pretty simple explanation for it.

So, if your calls are ringing just once before you’re sent to voicemail, read on. In this article, I’ll cover why this happens, and what you can do about it!

Why Does My Phone Call Ring Once, Before Going To Voicemail?

Person On Mobile Phone

If the phone rings exactly one time, it usually comes down to one of three things. This is true regardless of whether you’re the one calling, or being called.

Let’s look over each one of them now!

1. The Phone Is On Do Not Disturb Mode

This is usually the most obvious explanation.

If your call someone whose phone is on Do Not Disturb mode, their phone will not ring as normal. This is after all, the point of Do Not Disturb mode, as it’s meant to block or silence incoming notifications.

Note however that each phone handles it differently.

While some phones will send the call to voicemail immediately (similar to automatically declining the call), others will let the phone ring exactly one time, and others will let the phone ring entirely (4-5 times) before sending the caller to voicemail.

So, how can you rule this one out, or solve it entirely?

Try calling a different number to see if you experience the same issue. Alternatively, if your phone is the one having this problem, make sure that you’ve fully disabled Do Not Disturb mode on your phone, as well as turned off any automatic call silencing features.

Note that some phones – such as iPhones for example, allow you to turn on Do Not Disturb for specific contacts. So, you’ll want to check this as well.

2. Someone Is Manually Declining Your Call

Secondly, it’s also possible that someone is manually declining your call.

When you place a call to someone, most modern smartphones have the ability for the person to choose whether or not they want to accept or decline the call.

Once the decline button is pressed, most phones will automatically and immediately send the person straight to voicemail – the rest of the rings will not happen.

So, if your call is going to voicemail after just one ring, this is a possibility. After all, if someone is actively using their phone, one ring is enough to hit the decline button and reject the call.

To test out whether this may be the cause, try calling again later, after the person has likely put their phone down and is no longer using it. Alternatively, try calling a different number.

If it’s your phone that appears to be ending the call after just one ring, it’s possible that the call is being cancelled. To learn more about cancelled calls, click here!

3. You Are Having A Carrier Issue With Your Phone

Finally, it’s possible that you having a specific issue with your carrier. For example, your carrier may be disconnecting your calls, or you may have a damaged SIM card.

If this is happening regardless of who you call (or who calls you), than this is most likely the reason.

Unfortunately, this is rarely an issue that you can troubleshoot and fix on your own.

Therefore, you may need to visit your local carrier store, or contact your cellular provider for assistance. They will be able to help diagnose the exact issue causing the problem, and provide any replacements or fixes that can help solve the issue.

For reference, the phone numbers of the major cellular providers within the United States are as follows:

AT&T: 1-800-331-0500

Verizon: 1-800-837-4966

T-Mobile: 1-800-937-8997

Sprint: 1-888-211-4727

Does One Ring Mean That You’re Blocked?

One of the most common concerns if your calls are being sent to voicemail, is that you may be blocked by the person that you’re calling.

But is this the case if the phone ends up ringing one time?

Unfortunately, it’s hard to know for sure – and it can depend on whether you’ve been blocked at the carrier level, or the phone level.

If blocked at the carrier level, the phone typically won’t ring at all. You may receive a message stating that the call could not be completed, or may even be sent immediately to voicemail without the phone ever ringing at all.

At the phone level however, different phones handle things differently.

While many phones will let the phone ring once if you’ve been blocked, it’s also possible that the phone is simply in Do Not Disturb mode.

Thankfully, the following tip can help!

Tip: Try Calling With A Different Number

One thing that you can do that can rule out being blocked, AND potential issues with your carrier, is to try calling the phone using a different phone number.

Preferably, it would be one that the receiver of the call wouldn’t have already recognized before.

If the phone goes through just fine when you call using the second number, than you know that the person doesn’t have Do Not Disturb mode turned on.

Instead, they’ve either blocked your specific number, or your phone carrier itself is experiencing issues.

You can get a new number on your current phone using an app like TextNow. TextNow also allows you to easily change your phone number within the app, so it’s great for testing things like this out.

If you no longer wish to keep your TextNow number once you’re done testing, click here to learn how to delete your TextNow account completely once you’re done.


It can be frustrating when your calls are sent to voicemail after just one ring, but don’t worry – usually, it’s no fault of your own.

By calling different numbers or using a different phone number to call, you can rule out the causes and figure out the exact issue that is causing the problem.

Of course, if all else fails, contact your carrier for assistance.

I hope that this article has answered all of your questions, and your calls are now going through. If you have any other questions, please ask them using the comment form below.

Wishing you the best.

– James McAllister

About the author 

James McAllister

James is the owner of He started his first blog at the age of 11, and has since gone on to start several successful businesses. In total, these businesses have sold hundreds of thousands of units and have touched millions of lives. Here on, he shares his knowledge that brought him to where he is today. If you want to connect with James, follow him on your favorite social networks!

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