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Overseas amateurs visiting Australia

There are reciprocal arrangements for operating amateur radios overseas.

In Australia, you need a licence to operate a transmitter (amateur station). 

You also need to follow licence conditions, device rules and use certain frequencies.

Operating an amateur station in Australia if you’re an international visitor

If you’re an overseas visiting amateur, depending on what type of overseas licence you hold, you can operate an amateur station in Australia under the Radiocommunications (Amateur Stations) Class Licence 2023

If your overseas qualification or licence is listed in Table A or Table B below, you can operate in Australia for 365 days without needing to inform us. You do not need to get an individual licence. You must follow the rules and conditions of the class licence and transmit your overseas call sign with the letters VK before it.

Amateur operators who are visiting from overseas and staying in Australia for longer than 365 continuous days will need to get an Australian qualification and call sign to continue operating in Australia. 

Different arrangements are planned for Harmonised Amateur Radio Examination Certificate (HAREC) (European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) Recommendation T/R 61-02) licensees, so that they can operate an amateur station under the class licence for any length of time and can apply for an Australian call sign.

Equivalent qualifications and licences

Table A: We have an arrangement with these countries or regions

We accept these amateur licences and qualifications because we have an arrangement with the country or region.

Who issued the licence Overseas licence or qualification Australian amateur licence you may be able to get
    Previous New
European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) CEPT Harmonised Amateur Radio Examination Certificate (HAREC) Level A Unrestricted Advanced
CEPT HAREC Level B Limited Advanced
CEPT HAREC - Advanced
CEPT class 1 licence Unrestricted Advanced
CEPT class 2 licence Limited Advanced
CEPT licence - Advanced
Canada Advanced Amateur Certificates of Proficiency in Radio Unrestricted Advanced
Amateur Certificate of Proficiency in Radio Unrestricted Advanced
Denmark Sendetilladelse Fur Amator Radio Station Kategory A and B Unrestricted Advanced
Kategory D and E Limited Advanced
Kategory C Novice Standard
France
(including New Caledonia)
Radio Amateur Station Licence Groups D and E Unrestricted Advanced
Radio Amateur Station Licence Group C Limited Advanced
Radio Amateur Station Licence Group B Novice Standard
Germany Deutsche Bundespost Class B Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Deutsche Bundespost Class C Licence Limited Advanced
Deutsche Bundespost Class A Licence Novice Standard
Greece
(Hellenic Republic)
Certificate of Category 'A' Unrestricted Advanced
Certificate of Category 'B' Intermediate Advanced
Certificate of Category 'C' Novice Standard
India Amateur Wireless Telegraphy Station Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Israel Radio Amateur Licence Class 'A' Unrestricted Advanced
Radio Amateur Licence Class 'B' Intermediate Advanced
Radio Amateur Licence Class 'C' Novice Standard

Japan

 

* Telephone-only operation on frequency bands above 30 MHz with 10 watts maximum power

First Class Amateur Radio Operator Certificate Unrestricted Advanced
Second Class Amateur Radio Operator Certificate Unrestricted Advanced
Third Class (Telegraph Class) Amateur Radio Operator Certificate Intermediate* Advanced*
Fourth Class (Telephone Class) Amateur Radio Operator Certificate Limited Advanced*
Malaysia Amateur Station Licence(qualified in telegraphy at 12 words per minute) Unrestricted Advanced
Amateur Station Licence (no telegraphy qualification) Limited Advanced
New Zealand Amateur Operator's Certificate (General) (Grades I and II prior to 14/07/1986) Unrestricted Advanced
Amateur Operator's Certificate (Limited) (Grade III prior to 14/07/1986) Limited Advanced
Amateur Operator's Certificate (Novice) Novice Standard
Papua New Guinea Amateur Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Amateur Licence (Limited) Limited Advanced
Novice Licence Novice Standard
Poland Amateur Licence Kategoria (Category) Pierwsza (Class A) Intermediate Advanced
Amateur Licence Kategoria (Category) Drugiej (Class B) Limited Advanced
Solomon Islands Amateur Radio Licence (Unrestricted) Unrestricted Advanced
Amateur Radio Licence (Restricted) Limited Advanced
Spain Aficionado Class A Unrestricted Advanced
Aficionado Class B Limited Advanced
Aficionado Class C Novice Standard
Switzerland Amateur Radio Telegraphist's Certificate (Transmission) Unrestricted Advanced
Class A Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Class B Licence Limited Advanced
United Kingdom Foundation   Foundation
Intermediate   Standard
Full   Advanced
United States of America
 
Original licence granted before 15 April 2000
Amateur Extra Class operator Unrestricted Advanced
Advanced Class operator Unrestricted Advanced
General Class operator Unrestricted Advanced
Technician Plus Class operator Intermediate Advanced
Technician Class operator Limited Advanced
Novice Class operator Novice Standard
Licences granted from 15 April 2000 to 22 September 2016
Amateur Extra Class operator Intermediate Advanced
General Class operator Intermediate Advanced
Technician Class operator Limited Advanced
Licences granted from 23 September 2016 to 2 July 2017
Amateur Extra Class operator Intermediate Advanced
General Class operator  Unrestricted Advanced
Technician Class operator Limited Foundation
Licences granted from 3 July 2017
Amateur Extra Class operator Intermediate Advanced
General Class operator Intermediate Standard
Technician Class operator Limited Foundation

Table B: We see these as equal to Australian qualifications

We may accept these licences and qualifications because we see them as equal to those in Australia.

Administration Class of certificate or licence Held Australian amateur licensing option for which holder is eligible
    Previous New
Argentina Licencia de Aficionado, Categoria Superior (Amateur Radio Operator's Licence, Superior Category) Unrestricted Advanced
Cayman Islands Amateur Operator's Certificate Class C Novice Standard
Hong Kong Amateur (Sound) Station Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Indonesia Advanced Level Amateur Station Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Intermediate Level Amateur Station Licence Intermediate Advanced
Preliminary Level Amateur Station Licence Novice Standard
Ireland Amateur Experimenters Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Italy Licenza di Impianto ed Esercizio di Stazione di Radioamatore, Classe 3 (Radio Amateur Station Licence Class 3) Unrestricted Advanced
Licenza di Impianto ed Esercizio di Stazione di Radioamatore, Classe 2 (Radio Amateur Station Licence Class 2) Intermediate Advanced
Licenza di Impianto ed Esercizio di Stazione di Radioamatore, Classe 1 (Radio Amateur Station Licence Class 1) Novice Standard
Luxembourg Licenced Amateur (Amateur Radio Operator's Certificate) Unrestricted Advanced
Malta City and Guilds of London Radio Amateur's Certificate§ Unrestricted Advanced
City and Guilds of London Radio Amateur's Certificate (no telegraphy qualification) Limited Advanced
Nauru Amateur Radio Station Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Netherlands Amateurradiozendmachtiging Categorie A (Amateur Radio Licence Class A) Unrestricted Advanced
Amateurradiozendmachtiging Categorie B (Class B) Intermediate Advanced
Amateurradiozendmachtiging Categorie C (Class C) Limited Advanced
Amateurradiozendmachtiging Categorie D (Class D) (not acceptable)
Norway Amateur Station Licence Class A Unrestricted Advanced
Philippines Radio Amateur Station Licence Class A (Advanced Class) Unrestricted Advanced
Radio Amateur Station Licence Class B (General Class) Intermediate Advanced
Radio Amateur Station Licence Class C (Novice Class) Novice Advanced
Singapore Amateur Station Licence (qualified in telegraphy at 12 words per minute) Unrestricted Advanced
Amateur Station Licence (no telegraphy qualification) Limited Advanced
South Africa Amateur Radio Station Licence Unrestricted Advanced
Restricted Amateur Licence Limited Advanced
Sri Lanka Radio Amateur Licence Novice Standard
Sweden Tillstand att inneha och anvanda amatorradiosandare, Klass A and B (Amateur Licence Class A and B) Unrestricted Advanced
Tillstand att inneha och anvanda amatorradiosandare, Klass T (Amateur Licence Class T) Limited Advanced
Tillstand att inneha och anvanda amatorradiosandare, Klass C (Amateur Licence Class C) Novice Standard
Vanuatu Amateur Wireless Station Operator's Certificate Limited Advanced
West Indies Amateur Radio Operator's Certificate Class A and B Unrestricted Advanced

Call signs for overseas visitors

If you operate an amateur station in Australia, you must use the prefix VK before your usual (home country) call sign.

Read our call sign policy, which outlines the procedures under the class licence.

Australian amateur operators going overseas

Australian advanced amateurs may be able operate in various overseas countries under reciprocal licensing arrangements under the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) Recommendation: 

  • T/R 61-01 – CEPT Radio Amateur Licence
  • T/R 61-02 – Harmonised Amateur Radio Examination Certificate (HAREC).

Advanced amateurs planning to operate overseas in a country that participates in CEPT Recommendation T/R 61-01 or T/R 61-02 can provide to that overseas regulator:

  • for a short stay (usually less than 3 months) – your advanced qualification, and either the ACMA confirmation letter sent to you in January or February 2024 or the call sign certificate if your call sign was assigned after 19 February 2024
  • for a longer stay (over 3 months) – written confirmation from us that you have passed an exam that fulfils the HAREC requirements. To request this HAREC confirmation, email your request, including your name, client ID and date of birth, to info@acma.gov.au.  

We recommend you contact the relevant overseas radiocommunications authority to understand their requirements and confirm your ability to operate in that country, before you leave.

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