Before you can get on the air, you are required to have an FCC license to operate legally. You need to know the rules of operation, and proper radio etiquette before you start transmitting. There are no age requirements; If you can pass the exam, you can be licensed! You will have the ability to talk with people not only in your local area, but in other countries, and in space (the ISS)! Once you have your license, it is easy to maintain, and renews every 10 years.
There are three levels of licensing; Technician, General, and Amateur Extra. Technician is the entry-level license, and requires passing an exam consisting of 35 questions on radio theory, regulations, and operating practices. This class gives access to all Amateur Radio frequencies above 30 megahertz, and some limited privileges on HF. You will need to pass the Technician class exam before you can take the exam for General. General class grants some operating privileges on all Amateur Radio bands and operating modes. The Amateur Extra class license gives all operating privileges (all bands and all modes) that are available for Amateur Radio use. You will need to have passed all previous license class exams in order to hold an Amateur Extra class license.
Classes and Exams
It is highly recommended that you attend a class to prepare yourself for the licensing exam. Classes are not required, but you may find it easier to learn the material in a classroom environment. Attending classes also can often give you the ability to gain hands-on experience with the equipment. Classes and Exam Sessions are held frequently by local clubs and other ARRL-affiliated organizations. If you are interested in joining one of our classes or attending an exam session, contact us! You can also click the link below to find other classes and exam sessions happening in the local area.
Not sure yet?
You’re not required to have a license to join us during our meetings or at our events! Come see what we do, ask questions, and even get yourself on the air (with the assistance of a licensed control operator)! Getting involved is the best way to learn and gain the experience necessary to pass the licensing exams.