NATO Phonetic Alphabet

On the radio if you want the other person to understand you, you should use phonetics.  You are encouraged, but not required, to use the NATO Phonetic Alphabet.  Many operators use informal, alternate words (America, Germany, Sugar, etc.) for part or all of their call sign.  Some use cute phrases, like “Whiskey One Artificial Intelligence” (for W1AI) to make their call more memorable.  As long as you give your call sign in English, and it is clear to anyone listening, these are all legal ways to identify.


Letter Code word Spoken as
A  Alfa AL-fah
B  Bravo BRAH-voh
C  Charlie CHAR-lee or SHAR-lee
D  Delta DEL-tah
E  Echo EK-oh
F  Foxtrot FOKS-trot
G  Golf GOLF
H  Hotel hoh-TEL
I  India IN-dee-ah
J  Juliet JEW-lee-et or JEW-lee-ET
K  Kilo KEE-loh
L  Lima LEE-mah
M  Mike MYK
N  November noh-VEM-ber
O  Oscar OS-kah
P  Papa pah-PAH
Q  Quebec ke-BEK
R  Romeo ROH-mee-oh
S  Sierra see-ERR-ah
T  Tango TANG-goh
U  Uniform EW-nee-form or OO-nee-form
V  Victor VIK-tah
W  Whiskey WIS-key
X  Xray EKS-ray or EKS-RAY
Y  Yankee YANG-kee
Z  Zulu ZOO-loo