Australian Amateur
Licensing And Callsigns


Certificates Of Proficiency

Apparatus Licences

RPLA & Exemptions

Operating Guidelines

Visiting Australia

About Australian Amateur Licensing


The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is Australia’s regulator for broadcasting, the internet, radiocommunications and telecommunications. The ACMA administers spectrum use through the provisions of the Radiocommunications Act 1992 (the Act). Link

ACMA allocates access to the radiofrequency spectrum through one of three licence types: Spectrum, Apparatus or Class licences. The Amateur Service falls within the Apparatus licence category.

The amateur service is designed primarily to facilitate hobby radiocommunications and for technical experimentation and operates on specified frequency bands. Amateur radio operators communicate using transmission modes including, but not limited to, Morse code, telephony and data.

Anyone can listen to the amateur bands using a receiver, but to transmit, operator qualifications, issued by the WIA (see below), and a licence issued by ACMA is required.

An amateur apparatus licence is issued to authorise a station that:

  is operated for the purposes of self-training in radiocommunications; intercommunication using radiocommunications; and
  technical investigation into radiocommunications by persons who do so solely with a personal aim; and
  who have no pecuniary interest in the outcome of the operations of the station;
  is operated on amateur frequencies or amateur frequency bands; and
  may participate in the amateur-satellite service.

In Australia there are five amateur station licence types that are issued to qualified persons, these are:

 Amateur Foundation Station (base level entry);
 Amateur Standard Station;
 Amateur Advanced Station;
 Amateur Repeater Station; and
 Amateur Beacon Station

The licence will only be issued to a suitably qualified person and subject to the conditions contained in the Licence Conditions (Amateur Station) Determination (LCD).Link

One of the conditions of a licence is the issuing of an Amateur Station call sign for on air identification purposes. Callsigns are not an “entity” in their own right, and only exist with valid station licence. For further information on callsigns see below. Information on callsign structure and special callsigns see tabs to the right hand side.

Amateur station licences can be taken out for periods from generally one year up to five years. The current ACMA amateur station licence fee for an initial licence is $75 with a $51 annual licence renewal fee. There is a $49 licence variation fee if you are transitioning from an existing licence to a new licence. Details of fees for multi year amateur station licences can been found in Table 7.2 of the ACMA “Apparatus Licence Fee Schedule”. Link

Certificates Of Proficiency

Since 2 February 2009, the WIA has issued amateur certificates of proficiency, in addition to conducting amateur examinations (including special examinations).


Since 2 March 2009, the WIA has been responsible for the management of all levels of amateur callsigns, including special event, repeater and beacon callsigns. Under the new arrangements, all amateurs wishing to be issued a callsign must apply to the WIA for a callsign recommendation. Upon application, the WIA will provide a recommendation for an appropriate callsign. This recommendation will be a necessary part of ACMA's amateur transmitter licence application and variation process.

This recommendation will be relied on by ACMA when issuing a licence or varying a licence. A callsign is a condition of a licence, and ACMA remains the licensing authority, issuing or varying amateur licences in accordance with the Radiocommunications Act 1992.

This part provides a Guide to Callsigns, the Public List of Available Callsigns and a Guide to Certificates of Proficiency.

Page Last Updated: Wednesday 22 April 2015 at 22:41 hours