Posted April 12th, 2012, 06:13 AM
Hi Musicorn - on Radiance of the Seas they where selling pairs of non brand type of handheld radios for $38 USD which is a great price.
In Australia Dick Smith sells pairs of Unidens of $99 Model UH038SX-2NB. Uniden has an office/repair area in Australia. These radios have a battery pack and can take AA batteries as well which is also handy if you forget to charge them overnight. They are line of sight but on a ship they appear to work OK as a lot of children had them on our last two cruises, I have not tried them myself but bulkheads decks etc will impact on their performance being made of metal.
Your son will obviously start using the radios at home and in Australia in a few years the standard will be 80 channels (really 77 channels) so what ever you purchase ensure they are marked something like 77 NB Channels.
I have a couple of older Uniden Handhelds and they have been working for well over 5 years on the same batteries.
Jaycar and other electronic shops also sell them, so look around.
To answer your other questions - waterproof handhelds are quite expensive double the price, most handhelds only have a 5W output and that is a legal requirement in Australia, you do not need a license for UHF CB, and they are quite easy to use. Other information can be found at:
I hope this helps. I am a Ham Radio Operator and have tried to write this as simple as I can so if you have any further questions please ask.
Stan - VK1FSTJ
Cheers for now
Rhapsody of the Seas - 11/02/2014 - South Pacific Islands
Voyager of the Seas - 13/01/2013 - Pacific Island Fusion
Radiance of the Seas - 12/02/2012 - Tasmania Explorer
Radiance of the Seas - 20/11/2011 - New Zealand Explorer