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International Operating

Overview

 

Reciprocal Operating Overview

Many times, an amateur radio licensee would like to operate while visiting a foreign country. In many cases this is possible – sometimes it is quite easy, sometimes it is difficult, and, in some cases, it is not possible.

The first thing to remember is that a Reciprocal Operating agreement does not mean the amateur can simply go and begin transmitting.  It means there are known procedures to follow.  Think of it as there are identified “hoops” for the amateur to “jump through” with the result being you will have permission to operate from a foreign country.

In some cases, such as Canada, a US licensee can simply append the proper Canadian prefix to their US call and begin operating. In many cases, especially through multi-lateral agreements such as CEPT, the amateur needs only to carry specific documents and can get on-the-air. In some cases, such as the IARP, the amateur must first obtain a written document that authorizes transmissions before they begin. In many situations, even though there may be an existing bilateral agreement between the US and a specific country, the amateur must apply and pay the requisite fees though the proper channels to obtain an operating permit.  There are also situations that even though there is not bilateral agreement with the US, a country may allow you to apply and obtain a temporary operating authorization or license.

A word of caution:  When operating in a foreign country, you must follow the rules and regulations that country has in place for amateur radio. Frequency allocations may be different. As an example, just because you have phone privileges between 7.2 and 7.3 MHz with your FCC license, if you are operating in ITI Regions 1 or 3 (outside of the Americas), amateurs do not have any operating allocation on those frequencies. It is your responsibility to understand those differences when you wish to operate from a foreign country.  Know Before You Go!

The information presented on these pages was collated in the Spring 2021 and represents the current best information available to connect the visiting amateur with the appropriate resource in another country to obtain the proper operating credentials. The master table will show you some basic information, such as the country’s name and Amateur Radio prefix. On that table will be a link to their IARU National Society if they are an IARU member and a contact is known. Countries that participate in one of the three main Multi-lateral Reciprocal Operating Agreements – CEPT T/r 61-01, CEPT ECC Recommendation (05)06 or the IARP – will be noted as such in those columns.

Several types of information will appear in the “Special Notes – Additional Information” column. If the country participates in CEPT or IARP, there will be a link to the information page for those agreements.  If the country has a link to notes, you will be taken to the “Country Notes” page, where you will find contact information or links to the current best information available.

Please keep in mind that this kind of information can be very fluid in nature. In the past, two outstanding individuals maintained this data. Both are now Silent Keys (SK) – John Hennessee, N1KB, and Veke Komppa, OH2MCN. Over the years the more detailed information they maintained generally has become outdated, links changed or removed, and information about potential contacts to assist in various offices has become obsolete. Much of the information on this new resource will be different from what you may have previously bookmarked or noted. What is presented here is the current information, all verified in Spring 2021.

For a comprehensive overview of the countries with which the US has reciprocal arrangements, view the "US Amateurs Travelling and Operating Abroad" document (item number 4) on the US Amateurs Operating Overseas FAQ page.
 

  • Operations FAQ

    Find answers to FAQ on visiting and operating in the US, operating overseas, frequencies outside the US, and more. Learn More

  • Reciprocal Permit

    Find operating permit information for various countries. Learn More

  • International Waters

    Read more about maritime mobile operating in international waters. Learn More

  • US Amateurs Operating Overseas

    Find out how you can operate outside the US. Learn More

  • Third Party Agreements

    Find out with whom you can handle third party traffic. Learn More

  • Operating in the U.S.

    Foreign amateurs who wish to operate in the US and are not US licensees or citizens may do so in one of three ways... Learn More

  • Bilateral Reciprocal Agreements

    The following countries have signed a reciprocal operating agreement with the US... Learn More

  • Frequencies Outside the US

    See the frequency allocations for US amateurs operating under FCC jurisdiction... Learn More

  • CEPT

    Find out how US Amateurs travel to and operate from most European countries without obtaining an additional licensee or permit. Learn More

  • IARP

    For a US citizen to operate an amateur station in a CITEL country, an IARP is necessary. Learn More