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Citizen band radio stations class licence

This class licence lets you use citizen band (CB) radios to communicate over short distances. 

What this class licence lets you do

You can use CB radio to communicate over short distances via the Citizen Band Radio Service (CBRS).

You can use the CBRS for:

  • any voice communications
  • telemetry and telecommand

All users operate on shared frequencies.

Licence rules

You don't need to apply for a class licence or pay any fees.

But you must follow all the rules in the:

Power output

Your equipment cannot exceed the maximum power stated in the class licence.

Frequencies for CB radios

You can find the frequencies for CB radios in schedule 1 of the class licence.

You can only use CB radios on designated channels in these frequencies:

  • HF – 26.965 MHz to 27.405 MHz (inclusive)

  • UHF – 476.4125 to 477.4125 MHz (inclusive)

You can only use telemetry and telecommand on UHF channels 22 and 23. You cannot speak on these channels.

We do not allow packet radio and other types of data operation on CB bands.

If you want to use other frequencies, you must apply for an apparatus licence.

CB repeater stations

To operate a CB repeater station, you need an apparatus licence.

If you are near a repeater station, you can operate a CB radio station through the CB repeater station but only:

  • in the UHF band
  • on the repeater’s assigned channels

Channels 1 to 8 and 41 to 48 are repeater output channels. Channels 31 to 38 and 71 to 78 are the matching repeater input channels.

For example, a repeater that transmits on Channel 1 will always receive on Channel 31.

If you operate your CB radio in duplex or repeater mode, it will automatically select the matching frequency.

If there is no repeater station in the area, you can use the repeater channels to communicate on a single frequency. Be aware that these can interfere with a repeater station, even if it's a long way away.

Contact other CB users for the first time

There are 2 channels you can use to contact other CB users for the first time.

These are:

  • channel 11 (AM) (27.085 MHz) and Channel 16 (SSB) (27.155 MHz) in the HF band
  • channel 11 (476.675 MHz) in the UHF band

After you've made contact you should move to another channel. This leaves the channel available for other users to contact each other.

Emergencies

We set aside 2 channels that are only for emergency messages:

  • channel 9 (27.065 MHz) in the HF band
  • channels 5/35 (476.525/477.275 MHz) in the UHF band

But you can use any CB frequency to attract attention in an emergency. 

Connect to a telephone network

In an emergency you can use any CB frequency to attract attention.

But you must follow the rules in the Telecommunications (Labelling notice for Customer Equipment and Customer Cabling) Instrument 2015.

For more information, you can contact us

Problems with interference or reception

CB radios can interfere with nearby TV and radio equipment. If this happens you must try to fix it.

If you want to use selective calling, you can only use these methods:

  • Continuous Tone Coded Squelch System on UHF bands
  • SelCall on HF bands

Call signs

Call signs are a unique series of letters and numbers. They make it easy to identify a station.

You do note need to use a call sign for class licences. But we recommend that you identify yourself when you communicate by CB radio.

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