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Old 05-01-2011, 13:20   #1
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Is FCC Registration Required in Bahamas for VHF Radio ?

I'm looking for other opinions on this topic. I've been told it costs $200 to register our VHF radio with the FCC before crossing to the Bahamas. What are the consequences if I don't? What about my SSB?
thanks!
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Old 05-01-2011, 13:23   #2
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Yes, possible fines. Best is to get on FCC's website. It is a little difficult to navigate, but there is a webpage that has a step by step procedure. I followed it and got my license in a month. SSB is a seperate license, but same website. I will include link to website when I find it. (unless someone beats me to it ).
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Old 05-01-2011, 13:32   #3
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Whats a USA license going to do in another country?
Once you're out of the USA arn't you free?
And the Bahamas are not USA. Are they?
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Old 05-01-2011, 14:18   #4
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To comply with the letter of the law, yeah....

in reality? Don't waste your money. No one in the Bahamas cares about your VHF license. The consequences are zero, nada, zip. I have never heard anyone even using their call signs over there.
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Old 05-01-2011, 14:28   #5
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should you not just be able to get the MROP license, I think it is a 4 hour course about 65 dollars, this should cover you on the VHF radio,,, the SSB is different,,,receiving without license is OK but you can not transmit without one

Commercial Radio Operator License Program: Who Needs a License

Commercial Radio Operator License Program: Types of Licenses: Marine Radio
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Old 05-01-2011, 14:32   #6
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To clarify, I do not mean a ham radio license (already have that). I've been told that the radio itself must be registered with the FCC when being used outside the US.
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Old 05-01-2011, 14:47   #7
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not sure on that one
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Old 05-01-2011, 15:12   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Whats a USA license going to do in another country?
Once you're out of the USA arn't you free?
And the Bahamas are not USA. Are they?
Radio licenses are covered by international agreement, and should be issued by the same flag as your vessel cruises under.Once you get one you no longer have to worry that it will be noticed during entry, or by a passing US CG or Navy. In practice I've rarely heard about fines being issued, but they are steep up to $10,000.00 US.
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Old 05-01-2011, 15:28   #9
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As noted above, radio licensing is covered under international agreements to which the U.S. and virtually every other country is a party.

In the U.S. (only), the U.S. government has tried to give its citizens a break by not requiring a VHF license, provided that you use the radio in the U.S. and do not communicate with foreign-flagged vessels or shore-based stations.

However, when you go abroad you MUST obtain a license for your VHF radio and for your SSB and other transmitting equipment if fitted. This is no big deal. The single STATION LICENSE covers all transmitting equipment: VHF, SSB, radar, EPIRB, satellite communicators, etc., provided that you check all the boxes when you submit the application. So....stop swimming upstream: check all the boxes whether you have the equipment or not and pay the one-time fee for the STATION LICENSE. It's good for 10 years.

One advantage is that you get an FCC MMSI number which goes into an international registry (the MMSI's issued by Boat U.S. and other organizations DO NOT go into this database, so are practically useless outside the U.S.).

Note that in addition to the STATION LICENSE, everyone who operates the radios must have an OPERATORS LICENSE. No exam. You can get the lowest level one...the Restricted Marine Radio Operators License...at the same time you get the station license.

Note also that these licenses are COMPLETELY SEPARATE from ham radio licenses. A ham license allows you to operate any radio on the HAM BANDS ONLY.

These marine licenses (STATION and OPERATOR) allow you to operate type-accepted marine radios on the internationally-designated MARINE BANDS ONLY.

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Old 05-01-2011, 15:32   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainKJ View Post
should you not just be able to get the MROP license, I think it is a 4 hour course about 65 dollars, this should cover you on the VHF radio,,, the SSB is different,,,receiving without license is OK but you can not transmit without one

Commercial Radio Operator License Program: Who Needs a License

Commercial Radio Operator License Program: Types of Licenses: Marine Radio

Wrong license unless you're doing commercial stuff.

There are no tests. There is a ship's station license and a restricted operators permit needed.

Marine Radio Information for Boaters - BoatSafe.com

John
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Old 05-01-2011, 15:46   #11
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Types of Licenses

It really IS confusing. No wonder there's so much conflicting info bouncing about.

There are twelve (12) different commercial radio operators permits and licenses, most of which require some sort of exam. The one which does not, and which is appropriate for most recreational boaters, is the:

Restricted Radiotelephone Operator Permit, known by the designator "RR". This is good for life.

You can read all about it here: Commercial Radio Operator License Program: Types of Licenses: Restricted Radiotelephone

And, for those interested, the various types of commercial licenses are given here: Commercial Radio Operator License Program: Types of Licenses

Bill
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Old 05-01-2011, 16:24   #12
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Mark-
It's called reciprocity. Most nations only offer radio licensing to their own nationals, but they extend reciprocal operating privileges to locensed operators from other countries, typically under ITU (UN) treaty I believe.

Yes, many places ignore VHF licensing. But if someone boards you and wants to make a little mordida...What, you don't have a license? Oh, what a fine opportunity.

The FCC commits highway robbery with Ships Station License fees, they used to be $75/10 years, then $225?, now 200? when they are supposed to be priced to just cover their costs of operation, which are probably $20.
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Old 05-01-2011, 17:30   #13
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Bill... I've found info on Ship Radio Station License on the FCC web site; including the form with all the check boxes! However, there is no mention of a single-side band radio. Does that require a different license? or will the Station License be sufficient?
THANKS.
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Old 05-01-2011, 18:33   #14
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Bill... I've found info on Ship Radio Station License on the FCC web site; including the form with all the check boxes! However, there is no mention of a single-side band radio. Does that require a different license? or will the Station License be sufficient?
THANKS.
As usual, the FCC has the uncanny ability to complicate things!

It's in Item 18 on schedule B...that's where you check off the equipment. Marine SSB is MF (medium frequency) and HF (high frequency). Check them both. And, check all the others while you're at it!

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Old 05-01-2011, 23:04   #15
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As noted above, radio licensing is covered under international agreements to which the U.S. and virtually every other country is a party.

In the U.S. (only), the U.S. government has tried to give its citizens a break by not requiring a VHF license, provided that you use the radio in the U.S. and do not communicate with foreign-flagged vessels or shore-based stations.

However, when you go abroad you MUST obtain a license for your VHF radio and for your SSB and other transmitting equipment if fitted. This is no big deal. The single STATION LICENSE covers all transmitting equipment: VHF, SSB, radar, EPIRB, satellite communicators, etc., provided that you check all the boxes when you submit the application. So....stop swimming upstream: check all the boxes whether you have the equipment or not and pay the one-time fee for the STATION LICENSE. It's good for 10 years.

One advantage is that you get an FCC MMSI number which goes into an international registry (the MMSI's issued by Boat U.S. and other organizations DO NOT go into this database, so are practically useless outside the U.S.).

Note that in addition to the STATION LICENSE, everyone who operates the radios must have an OPERATORS LICENSE. No exam. You can get the lowest level one...the Restricted Marine Radio Operators License...at the same time you get the station license.

Note also that these licenses are COMPLETELY SEPARATE from ham radio licenses. A ham license allows you to operate any radio on the HAM BANDS ONLY.

These marine licenses (STATION and OPERATOR) allow you to operate type-accepted marine radios on the internationally-designated MARINE BANDS ONLY.

Bill
WA6CCA
This man speaks *KNOWLEDGE*

Bill - can you speak to renewals? I cant recall if my restricted operators license or ships station license is perpetual...I think the other is 10 year renewal.
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