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walkie talkies on carnival

Union City, New...
Level Contributor
52 posts
9 reviews
walkie talkies on carnival

hi t/a/gang.wondering if you can bring walkie talkies onboard or do they on carnival have them instead of phone texting?

5 replies to this topic
Cobham, United...
Level Contributor
1,961 posts
31 reviews
1. Re: walkie talkies on carnival

Do you mean you want to be able to remotely speak to someone else on board? If so, they offer an app called "Carnival HUB" which you can download to your phone and allows you to use your phone as a chat device within the ship. It costs $5, on top of international roaming charges and only works when you're a certain distance from shore:


(you may need to copy and paste the above into your browser bar if it doesn't show as a hotlink)

The only communication devices that appear on Carnival's prohibited list are Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRB), ham radios, communication scanners, wide-band receivers and satellite phones.

Edited: 13 June 2018, 18:22
Level Contributor
1,242 posts
273 reviews
2. Re: walkie talkies on carnival

Surely a walkie talkie would be classed as a ham radio? I can't see cruise line staff being persuaded there's some compelling technical difference - the are both radio transmitters and receivers.

Imperial, MO
Level Contributor
59 posts
20 reviews
3. Re: walkie talkies on carnival

I've read of many people bringing walkie talkies on board only to discover because of the metal walls communications with the talkies usually only work outside on the upper decks and even then not very well.

Cobham, United...
Level Contributor
1,961 posts
31 reviews
4. Re: walkie talkies on carnival

Re post #2: They’re both two-way radios and some people use the terms interchangeably, with the only difference being their portability. Some cruise lines used to rent out walkie talkies for passenger use, but they have fallen out of favour. These were low-power devices with a limited range, operating on a limited number of channels which required no licence and that’s what I thought the OP was talking about. As opposed to high-power long-range devices providing access to all Amateur Radio frequencies and requiring an operator licence (colloquially known as a ham licence). One crucial thing is whether the device operates on frequencies that interfere with the ship’s communications (so UHF would be a problem).

As @Oakman58 says, the low power devices often didn’t work well through steel decks and it got worse as ships got bigger. Also, the limited number of channels meant that any passenger tuned to the same channel as you could hear all your conversations… and a channel only allowed one talker at a time, so even a relatively small number of passengers using the service could clog it up. There are better alternatives available these days, such as eXRS radios which overcome some of these limitations and which I think would also be acceptable for use on a cruise ship.

Level Contributor
5,374 posts
1,203 reviews
5. Re: walkie talkies on carnival

Download the Carnival Hub app and you can text for free anywhere on the ocean. Just connect to the ship's Wi-Fi and then you can text anyone in your party (they need to download the app too). There are no roaming charges if you log onto the ship's Wi-Fi. I used this in February on a family cruise and it worked great for finding my adult kids. I think it cost $5 per day and not $5 total.

In my opinion this would be easier than walking around with bulky walkie talkies.

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