Walkie Talkie Etiquette

Even though we usually think of military and security applications when someone mentions walkie talkies, they’re actually quite useful in several different scenarios. Walkie talkies are widely used by people who go backpacking and hiking in remote areas. In places where cell phone networks have no coverage, a long-range walkie talkie can be a hiker’s tether to society, allowing him or her to communicate during emergencies and to receive alerts about weather. Walkie talkies are also indispensable for certain large scale business operations such as warehousing and film production. 

If you’re thinking about purchasing a walkie talkie, you should learn the proper etiquette for using one. It helps keep your transmission professional and easy to comprehend, which is absolutely crucial during emergency situations. 

What is proper Walkie Talkie Etiquette?

Here are the most important etiquette guidelines to follow when relaying a message through a walkie talkie:

  • Always wait for someone else to finish their transmission before you speak. Do not press the ‘push to talk’ button until someone else says ‘over’. In case of an emergency, wait until the other person has stopped talking, press the talk button and then say ‘break!’ a couple of times before you relay the message. 
  • Don’t jump into conversations that don’t involve you. If you’re using a walkie talkie at work, then you’ll most likely hear transmissions that are meant for someone else. If your name isn’t mentioned in the initial transmission, simply ignore it. 
  • When in doubt about what language to speak in, use English. English has generally been accepted worldwide as the default language for radio communication. 
  • Take care when you’re transmitting confidential details over radio because there’s always the possibility of someone else tuning in to the same channel. Always make sure that you take the necessary precautions first, such as using an exclusive channel and encrypting the transmission. 
  • Learn the proper terms and phrases. Walkie talkie lingo doesn’t exist to make radio talk fancy. Instead, its purpose is to keep communication streamlined and to the point. 
  • Stick to business talk – if you’re using a walkie talkie in a commercial environment, then always make a commitment to be professional. Don’t use it to play pranks or joke around with your coworkers. 

In addition to the above, keep these radio communication practices in mind:

  • Keep it short and to the point – never mistake a walkie talkie for a phone. It is only a device which is used to transmit simple messages and status updates back and forth quickly. Therefore, if you have to say something, never beat around the bush. 
  • Keep it simple – Just because ’10 codes’ exist doesn’t mean that you have to use them in every conversation. It’s all about making communication as uncomplicated as possible. 
  • Speak with clarity – if you’re facing an emergency situation, you want to make sure that all the important details are relayed. Stay calm and articulate each sentence as clearly possible. 

Walkie talkies aren’t just used by the military and police, they also come in handy when you’re taking part in outdoor activities or overseeing a commercial operation. If you’re thinking of buying a walkie talkie, it’s best to learn the proper etiquette. 

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