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World Amateur Radio Day - April 18


April 18 has been declared World Amateur Radio Day. It was on that day in 1925 that the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) was founded, during the International Radiotelegraph Conference in Paris. That is why radio radio amateurs worldwide celebrate this day with special activities every year.

The advocates of an International Amateur Radio Union were of the opinion that the shortwave spectrum that radio amateurs use to  transmit and to receive, could unite people all over the world, something that was assumed impossible. Therefore, this unifying action was undertaken.  In addition to protecting  and preserving frequency spectrum for the radio amateur, the IARU also strives to protect the  frequency spectrum of importance to other services. For radio amateurs, protection of our bands is of utmost importance, as shown through amateur response in countless emergencies and disasters worldwide.

Interest in  amateur radio has  only grown since those early days, with more than 3 million radio amateurs worldwide. Through this medium people from different countries and cultures could interact  with each other and  exchange ideas, long before there were facilities such as (mobile) phones, e-mail or social media.

And  amateur radio is still popular because you don't need a mobile network or internet  to  communicate. This is especially important to those in remote areas, those with outdoor interests such as hikers, off-roaders and hunters, emergency preparedness, as a hobby, or as an entry to a new career path such as electronics and communications. The service is, and always has been completely infrastructure independent. Radio amateurs are especially important  to maintain connections during disasters, in the event that regular communication channels  are no longer available. For example, the Amateur Radio Service kept agencies in New York City in contact with each other after their command center was destroyed during the tragedy of 9/11.

Radio amateurs were the first to discover that the HF spectrum  was not the wasteland that experts from those days branded it, but a tool that could support global communication. When the industry discovered that amateurs could successfully communicate worldwide on these shorter wavelengths, amateur radio was again in great danger of  being pushed aside. This led to the creation of the IARU. At the International Radio Telegraph Convention of 1927, amateur radio assignments were made that are  still  recognized today: 160, 80, 40, 20 and 10 meters. In the course of the years,  the IARU  has also worked to give radio amateurs new bands at 136 kHz, 472 kHz, 5 MHz, 10 MHz, 18 MHz, 24 MHz and 50 MHz, and a regional European allocation at 70 MHz.

The 25  countries that formed the IARU in 1925 have now grown to more than 160 affiliated associations in three regions. IARU Region 1 includes Europe, Africa, the Middle East and North Asia. Region 2 includes North and South   America and Region 3 includes Australia, New Zealand, the  Pacific Islands and most of Asia. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has recognized the IARU as the representative of the interests of radio amateurs.

IARU has member societies in countries shown in yellow

All radio amateurs are invited to go on the air on World Amateur Radio Day to explore our hobby, to promote it to family and friends, and within their interests.

Do you want to get involved? 

We offer our on-line courses about every 12-weeks. Further information is available at:

RAC “Get on the Air on World Amateur Radio Day” Special Event

On Monday, April 18, 2022, Radio Amateurs of Canada is once again organizing a special on-air event to celebrate World Amateur Radio Day.

Every year on April 18, Radio Amateurs worldwide take to the airwaves in celebration of Amateur Radio and to commemorate the formation of the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) on April 18, 1925. Radio Amateurs of Canada is once again holding a “Get on the Air on World Amateur Radio Day” special event in which we encourage as many Amateurs as possible to get on the air and contact as many RAC stations as possible.

  • RAC official stations will operate across Canada from 0000Z to 2359Z on April 18. The RAC official station call signs are VA2RAC, VA3RAC, VE1RAC, VE4RAC, VE5RAC, VE6RAC, VE7RAC, VE8RAC, VE9RAC, VO1RAC, VO2RAC, VY0RAC, VY1RAC and VY2RAC. 
  • Those contacting one or more of these stations will be eligible for a special commemorative certificate noting their participation in RAC’s Get on the Air on World Amateur Radio Day Event.
  • Participants simply need to complete one or more contacts, on any band and mode, with RAC official stations to earn their certificates.
  • No logs need to be submitted; simply check back on the RAC website when instructed and enter your call sign to download your certificate.

Sources:,!ApeN-l7qi2UFk3OAFuk8KTSq4Rti?e=LOohoE, and RAC “Get on the Air on World Amateur Radio Day” Special Event


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