Call sign tips and tricks

Here are some tips and tricks on call signs:

Interested in getting sequential call signs with your and your family or friends? Suppose you and your Mom are taking the Tech exam and you both pass. Congratulations! Welcome to ham radio! Wouldn’t it be fun if you had call signs that were one right after the other? If so, just ensure that you are listed in the order you wish on the candidate roster when you are taking your exam. The FCC issues call signs in the order that they are processed by the VEC. For the ARRL this is the order that the candidates are listed on the candidate roster.

How do you check to see what your new call sign is? It takes about a week for the ARRL to process your exam results and post them to the ULS. So after a few days start checking to see if your new call sign has been posted. To search the ULS directly:

  1. Go to the FCC Universal License System search page
  2. Change the license search type to "By Name"

3. Type in the name you gave on your 605 form and hit search.

Once you have been issued your sequential call sign, you might be interested in getting a vanity call sign. The ARRL information about the vanity call process for those interested can be found here.

When selecting a vanity call sign, please consider that every time a callsign is assigned to someone, that callsign is generally unavailable to anyone else for 2 years. This includes switching from one vanity call to another. Please be considerate when selecting a vanity call and pick one you'll enjoy for years before applying.