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How To Improve Your Walkie-Talkie Etiquette

If you are starting a job or project where you will be using two-way radios to communicate, you’ll need to understand proper etiquette for speaking on these channels. Explore how to improve your walkie-talkie etiquette for some helpful tips.

How To Improve Your Walkie-Talkie Etiquette

Speak Concisely

Walkie-talkies involve a lot of people tuning in to a single channel, so you must speak concisely to avoid clogging the feed with chatter. You shouldn’t use the radio for small talk; use it only for sharing critical information.

Before speaking into your channel, consider what you want to say and the best way to communicate that. Then, talk clearly with proper dictation and volume so that the intended recipient can understand you clearly. Also, to speak more effectively over walkie-talkies, you can use specific verbiage in place of common phrases.


Learn the Lingo

Because some everyday words don’t translate well over two-way radios, specific vocabulary can help make communication clearer. Below are some of the most common phrases:

  • Affirmative – Yes
  • Negative – No
  • Stand by – Hold on/wait
  • Copy?/Do you copy? – Do you understand what I said?
  • Over – I’m done speaking
  • Roger/Roger that – I understand what you said
  • Out – Conversation ended

Also, when you are spelling out words or listing letters in a code, you can use something called the NATO phonetic alphabet. You may recognize this system, as the military uses it in their radio communication. It assigns a word to each letter, such as Alpha for A, Golf for G, Romeo for R, etc.


Maintain Equipment

Radio etiquette is more about how you speak over the walkie-talkie; it also matters how you handle your equipment. Whenever you pick up a radio, always check that all functions are working. That way, you don’t have to worry about a malfunction during an emergency. Then, to maintain a two-way radio battery’s charge, you should make sure to return it to the charging port between uses. Otherwise, you or one of your peers won’t be able to use it next time you need it.

Now that you know how to improve your walkie-talkie etiquette, you can become a better and more effective communicator over radio channels.

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