Just ordered a Uniden handheld. Do you need a license to operate a VHF radio?
Yes and No
The VHF spectrum is between 30 MHz & 300 MHz. Within that spectrum you have several bands for instance the 2 meter band which is from 144 MHz to 148 MHz. To communicate over this band you need a license. The US Marine radio frequency falls in the 156 MHz & 157 MHz range and for this you do not require a license.
Not in the US
But if you go to Canada or Mexico with it, you do need a license.
Give me a break!
Just visited the first link. Helpful information. But … “The Navigation Center of Excellence”??? Give me a break! Don’t they have an editor? Anyone with discretion in the CG? Typically you let others praise your cooking. Enjoy this “rant of excellence”. I’m done now.
for 2-way VHF need license
From what I have read you do need to have a license for a 2-way VHF radio.
see bottom of page at: http://www.uscgboating.org/safety/metlife/radio.htm
"Do I Need A Radio License or Operator’s Permit?
You must have a SHIP STATION LICENSE for your radio before operation. An OPERATOR’S PERMIT is only required if you dock in a foreign port. To obtain forms and additional information contact the FCC at (202) 418-3676(FORM). "
That information is out of date.
The following is from the FCC at http://wireless.fcc.gov/marine/fctsht14.html
Do I Need a Ship Radio Station License?
On October 26, 1996, the FCC released a Report and Order in WT Docket No. 96-82, FCC 96-421 (text, WordPerfect), eliminating the individual licensing requirement for voluntary ships operating domestically which are not required by law to carry a radio. The paragraphs below describe how the rules affect the maritime public.
WHO NEEDS A SHIP STATION LICENSE?
You do not need a license to operate a marine VHF radio, radar, or EPIRBs aboard voluntary ships operating domestically. The terms “voluntary” and “domestic” are defined below. Although a license is no longer required for these ships, you may still obtain a license (and call sign) by following the procedures outlined in Section IV.
WHICH SHIPS ARE VOLUNTARY?
The term “voluntary ships” refers to ships that are not required by law to carry a radio. Generally, this term applies to recreation or pleasure craft. In any event, the term “voluntary ships” does not apply to the following:
* Cargo ships over 300 gross tons navigating in the open sea;
* Ships certified by the U.S. Coast Guard to carry more than 6 passengers for hire in the open sea or tidewaters of the U.S.;
* Power driven ships over 20 meters in length on navigable waterways;
* Ships of more than 100 gross tons certified by the U.S. Coast Guard to carry at least one passenger on navigable waterways;
* Tow boats of more than 7.8 meters in length on navigable waterways; and,
* Uninspected commercial fishing industry vessels required to carry a VHF radio.
no longer need a license to operate a VHF-FM radio. One of the reasons why they did away with the requirement is to cut down on the amount of deaths, false searches for "overdue" boaters, etc. Because of the hassle of getting a radio license, a lot of rec boaters wouldn't bother to get one and therefor not carry a radio. It's easier to find someone when you have communications with them. I wish the FCC would reconsider. Just a couple of examples on channel 16 in the last 24 hrs....
"Hey Mojo, ya got yer ears on buddy?"
***Blowing in microphone*** "Hellooooo! Hellloooo, helloooo, helloo, anybody out there? This thing workin'? Helloooooooooo, helllooooo!"
"Hey Rudy, where ya at? They're biting big time over here!" Then Rudy answers and proceedes to have a 4 minute conversation and since they're so close all they and the CG can hear is themselves.
"Hey Scavenger, you @#$hole!@ Where'd you learn to drive? Thanks for the wake you #$$^& prick!"
"Oh ya, screw you!"
Then there's this...
Bohemia, perhaps you could join the CG Auxiliary? Then you could offer your services on improving the website. :P
Thanks for the updated info.
I was looking at a Mystic VHF/GPS with DSC (Digital Selective Calling) - Including Distress Button, Position Send and Request. For that you do need to get a MMSI.
WHAT IF I HAVE A MARINE RADIO WITH DIGITAL SELECTIVE CALLING (DSC) CAPABILITY?
You must obtain a nine-digit maritime mobile service identity (MMSI) and have it programmed into the unit before you transmit. Each vessel needs only one MMSI. Prior to obtaining an MMSI, you will be asked to provide certain information about your ship. It is important that you obtain an MMSI because the U.S. Coast Guard uses this information to help speed search and rescue operations.
If your vessel requires licensing by the FCC you will obtain an MMSI during the application/licensing process when you file FCC Form 159 and 605 with the FCC.
If your vessel does not require a license you may obtain an MMSI by contacting either BoatUS, Sea Tow Service International, Inc., or MariTEL. The contact information is contained in the Public Notice (text - Word) announcing the new procedures for private entities to issue MMSIs
You’ll probably be better off
with a separate GPS and VHF. That way, if your gps fails and has to be sent in for repairs, you don’t lose your radio as well.
The Mystic also only has roads built in for the mapping. That doesn’t do you much good on the ocean.
Try looking at a Garmin GPSMap76. It’s submersible and floats–plus it has the marine aids to navigation on its maps.
For a radio, try the Icom or Standards. They seem to hold up better to water.
That’s a good point
so will think about it. Just seeemed easier to have to only have to keep track of, and charge, one unit instead of two.
and everyone else for all the helpful information.
"On October 26, 1996, the FCC released a report and order eliminating the individual licensing requirement for voluntary ships operating domestically which are NOT required by law to carry a radio.
"You do NOT need a license to operate a marine VHF radio aboard voluntary ships operating domestically.
“The term “voluntary ships” refers to ships that are not required by law to carry a radio. Generally, this term applies to recreation or pleasure craft.”
Can’t wait!!! Should be in the mail today!
(*** Blowing in microphone *** “Hellooooo! Hellloooo, helloooo, helloo, anybody out there? This thing workin’? Helloooooooooo, helllooooo!”)