Amateur Radio License
There are usually two kinds of radios on cruising boats, VHF which is short range (~15 miles) and SSB which stands for Single Side Band or Ham radio. The VHF marine radio is licensed to your boat, while the SSB is licensed to you as an individual. The VHF is used to hail a marina or to have a bridge open or to talk to another boat or to call for help. The SSB radio is used to send email from the middle of the ocean, talk to people all over the world and even get phone patches to talk to loved ones back home. Getting a SSB license is not hard, but it does require some studying and taking a test.
Last update: 6/3/17