Are you too busy to talk, but still need to leave a voicemail? Trying to avoid confrontation by leaving heartbreaking news with a voicemail? The reasons for wanting your call to go straight to voicemail are plentiful: calling sick, breaking horrible news, skipping out on plans—the list goes on and on.

But can it be done? Is it possible to remove the other person’s ability to pick up the phone? Believe it or not, it can. It’s not only possible, but chances are you are locked in with a phone service that actually offers it, such as AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint And if you aren’t, don’t worry because there’s options for you, too.

However, it should be noted that it may not always work. It largely depends on your phone provider, but generally speaking, if both you and the person you’re calling have the same service, it will work. Outside of that, it’s hit or miss.

Call Directly to Someone’s Voicemail with Verizon

If you have a plan with Verizon, including the other person, this is what you do to go straight to voicemail:

1. Your first move is to access your voicemail. This is usually done with a number.

2. When your voicemail is ready, tap 2 on your keypad. This will initiate the voicemail feature.

3. Now, you will hear instructions immediately after. Listen closely because it will ask you to 1) record your message, then punch in the person’s 10-digit phone number or 2) provide the 10-digit phone number, and then record your message.

4. When asked, choose your delivery option.

5. Send the voicemail by tapping # (pound symbol).

Call Directly to Someone’s Voicemail with AT&T

If you’re sending a voicemail to someone who has AT&T, while you too have AT&T, this is what you do:

1. Start by accessing your voicemail, then open the keypad. Press 2.

2. Next, punch in the phone number you want to send voicemail to—the entire 10-digit phone number.

3. When you hear the signal, go ahead and record your message.

Tip: If you want to double-check your voicemail before you send it, press 1 on the keypad to replay it.

4. Send the voicemail by tapping # (pound symbol).

Call Directly to Someone’s Voicemail with Sprint

If you have Sprint, as does the other person, sending a voicemail is a piece of cake.

Here’s what you do:

1. First, call your voicemail number. When prompted, sign in with your account.

2. Select the option to send a voicemail. Listen carefully because Sprint will provide the necessary steps.

Call Directly to Someone’s Voicemail with T-Mobile

If you happen to have T-Mobile, and so does the other person, it’s really easy to send a voicemail. Yes, you do bypass giving their phone a ring.

Here’s how:

1. You begin by firing up your Phone app. Its app icon is usually a rotary phone.

2. When opened, tap on the dialer. This will open the keypad. Punch in this number: 1-805-637-7243 and call it.

3. Log into your voicemail with your account. When prompted, choose to send a voicemail and listen carefully. You will be provided with the necessary steps.

Call Directly to Someone’s Voicemail with an App

Sending a voicemail with one of the phone services above is great and all, but what if you none of them or you’re calling someone who is in the same camp? You are still able to send voicemails by using an app to assist you. There really is an app for everything.

1. Slydial (Android | iOS)

Slydial is up there in popularity, due to it providing the ability to go straight to voicemail with anyone you call, but also for being free. Yes, free. However, if you want to enjoy the benefit of it being free, you do have to deal with ads (about 30 seconds). What’s 30 seconds compared to hours of boredom at a party you don’t want to be a part of? It’s a small price to pay.

With that said, if you are the kind of person who hates waiting, Slydial does have premium tiers. You get ad-free access out of it, as well as the ability to send voicemails to several people at once—to name a few. Simply create an account with Slydial, call Slydial’s special number and start sending voicemails.

2. WhatCall (iOS)

If you want to skip creating an account with Slydial, bypass ads, and still have an app that sends you straight to voicemail, use WhatCall. Unfortunately, this is an iOS-only app (sorry, Android users). While a sideload version of WhatCall is available for Android, user reports indicate it isn’t functioning the way it’s supposed to. Take that with a grain of salt.

WhatCall pulls from your contacts, so it’s as easy as selecting a contact.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, it’s clear that phone services were thinking ahead in providing their own straight-to-voicemail feature, with many of the big names offering it with your phone plan. But if you don’t subscribe to any of them? No worries. A few apps available can offer the same function, regardless of your phone service.