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Old 08-19-2008
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VHF license??

I can not find a clear answer if a VHF license is required for a boat under 65' and cruising gulf and carribean countries\islands...
any input????
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Old 08-19-2008
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I reasearched this last year before we went down to the Bahamas and concluded it was required. I went ahead and applied for the station license for our boat. During our travels, no one seemed to care one way or the other and while I did not do a scientific survey, I don't think many boats had the license.
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Old 08-19-2008
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The legal answer is YES....

if you plan to leave US waters. The reality is that I have never been asked for one in the Caribbean. Put it on the "nice to do" list and delegate it to someone else.

The Incredible Hull
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Old 08-19-2008
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IF the boat is a US-boat, either state registered or USCG Documented, a Ship’s Station License and a Restricted Radio Operator’s License are both required if the boat is communicating with foreign stations—either boats or shore stations. Cruising to the Caribbean, Mexico or Central America will REQUIRE licensing, since they are foreign stations.

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Originally Posted by Crunch View Post
I can not find a clear answer if a VHF license is required for a boat under 65' and cruising gulf and carribean countries\islands...
any input????
BTW, a google search for "Vhf use FCC" brought up this webpage, which says:

Quote:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Radio License Information

An FCC ship station radio license is no longer required for any vessel travelling in U.S. waters which uses a VHF marine radio, radar or EPIRB, and which is not required to carry radio equipment. A license is necessary however for any vessel required to carry a marine radio, on an international voyage, or carrying an HF single sideband radiotelephone or marine satellite terminal. FCC license forms, including applications for ship and land station radio licenses, can now be downloaded from the FCC website.

Exactly, how is that not clear, given your plans??? IMHO, you must not have searched very hard.
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Old 08-19-2008
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I know you can get it yourself, but I paid an online company to do it for me. I had tried to do the government online form and could not figure it out. This guy did it for me and I received the ship station, operators the mmsi number and received it in 2 days. I was planning a Canadian trip.
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Old 08-19-2008
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Here, I'll make it easy, you need to fill out and submit form FCC form #605, here's the link:

FCC Form 605

You will need a restricted license for yourself and a ships license for the boat.
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Old 08-19-2008
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BTW, the RRO is lifetime... the Ships Station license is good for ten years. Prices are $65 and $160 IIRC.
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It is easy to do and can be done on line now. You don't even need to download a form, just have a little patience and a credit card. The system will actually walk you through it. And remember to check that you need a new DSC number. I was also advised that I might as well check everything that I was planning on installing as it saves going back later and modifying the license. So if you are going to install a SSB, go ahead and check it off. And like Kevin said, don't forget to get both the restricted radio operator's license and the ship license. Just need to get your FCC Registration Number (FRN) and you are in.
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Old 08-19-2008
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A radio license you may get away with for many years but there is always the chance when returning you are stopped for a safety check. Also there are times when a boat is inspected upon re-entry....No license might mean a heavy fine or worse. I like to play it safe especially at a time when homeland security makes things just a little bit different.
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Old 08-20-2008
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A minor detail: If your vessel is required to have a license and is found without one, it is a mire $10,000 fine from Uncle Charlie (FCC). So think carefully about whether you will be wanting to skip getting one or not.
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