Are you sailing through inland waterways in Europe this year? If so, you may need an ATIS capable VHF radio with a valid ATIS code

So what is ATIS?
ATIS, not to be confused with AIS, stands for Automatic Transmitter Identification System. This system is used on inland waterways in various countries in mainland Europe. At the end of every transmission the radio sends out a unique FFSK data signal, which contains the user or ship’s unique ATIS call sign, this identifies you to marine coast stations and inland stations.

Do I need a new radio to comply or can my current equipment be upgraded?

Icom’s current range of VHF Handheld and VHF/DSC fixed marine radios are ATIS (Automatic Transmission Identification System) capable, including the models that are sold in the United Kingdom. They can be simply programmed by Icom UK or your local dealer to work on this system. You will not notice a difference in the way you operate your radio and there are no buttons to press to activate it, it is an automatic and passive function once programmed into your radio.

What do I need to do to comply?

All you need to do before contacting us is to contact OFCOM at with your name, vessel name, vessel callsign, MMSI number (which will be sent to the Belgian Institute of Postal Services and Telecommunications (BIPT). Ofcom will then check their records and issue you with a Notice of Variation (NOV) to your licence, this may be sent to you electronically. You can then contact us, or your local Icom dealer, with your newly issued ATIS number and have it programmed into your radio.

Please note:

  • As part of this process your data will be given to the BIPT.
  • You must print a copy of the Basel Agreement and keep it with the NOV and your ships radio licence.
  • You must familiarise yourself with the Basel Agreement.
  • The UK is NOT acceded to the Basel Agreement.
  • Whilst overseas you will be under the jurisdiction of the authority in that country.

RAINWAT is the “Regional Arrangement Concerning the Radiotelephone Service on Inland Waterways” which, through the Basel Agreement, has introduced the Automatic Transmitter Identification System (ATIS) for vessels making VHF transmissions whilst on the inland waterways of the signatory countries:

Austria; Belgium; Bulgaria; Croatia; Czech Republic; France; Germany; Hungary; Luxemburg; Moldova; The Netherlands; Poland; Romania; Slovakia; Switzerland; Serbia & Montenegro.

To download a PDF of our new ATIS factsheet, please click on Icom ATIS Factsheet.