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Source: BUS Sachsen-Anhalt (Linie6PLus)

Apply for number assignment for recreational or commercial shipping (Ship Station License)


Ships use marine and inland waterway radio to communicate on the water. Before you put your radio equipment on board your ship into operation, you need a valid ship station license, which you must apply for from the Federal Network Agency.

In order to be able to use radio communication, the Federal Network Agency will assign you a call sign. A number assignment is also required if you want to operate a distress radio transmitter, for example an emergency radio beacon (EPIRB). The numbers are allocated to you in the form of a ship station license.

For new applications, all the necessary information must be provided in the application and the required supporting documents must be attached to the application.

In the event of the following changes, you must apply for a change to the Ship Station License:

  • Name of the allottee
  • address
  • Name of the vessel
  • Type of vessel
  • Type and number of radio installations
  • Omission of the billing identifier (AAIC)

Changes, such as the dimensions of the vessel or the details of the 24-hour emergency contact, must be notified. This data is passed on to the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service (DGzRS) and is very important in the event of an emergency at sea.

If the numbers are no longer required, a declaration of return must be made by all the allocation holders listed in the certificate (important in the case of a community of owners).

If a vessel is sold, the numbers can be transferred to the buyer as legal successor in order to avoid the discontinuation of the radio equipment with new numbers. To do this, an application must be made to the Federal Network Agency for an adjustment of the previously valid number allocation.

To be able to submit a new application for number allocation, you must own a German ship.

German ships are those that

  • are registered in the German maritime or inland waterway register in accordance with the relevant regulations,
  • are provided with a valid official or officially recognized German registration number, if there is no obligation to register the ship,
  • are owned by German nationals if there is no obligation to register or to display a license plate for the vessel.

In addition, you may only use radio equipment that meets the requirements of the European Union (EU) for marine equipment. Your radio equipment must also comply with the legal requirements.

New application:

  • if your ship is already registered in the maritime or inland waterway register: copy of the extract from the register
  • if your vessel has not yet been entered in a register of sea-going vessels: the registered distinguishing signal with proof

Change application:

  • New application form, current allocation number and the call sign of the allocation

Return of numbers:

  • Original certificate of allocation


  • Documents for the sale / purchase of the vessel

You can find out which other documents are required in your case in the relevant application form.


  • The allocation of numbers - and, under certain circumstances, their rejection - is subject to a fee. The amount of the fees is calculated in accordance with the Special Fee Ordinance of the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA BGebV) as amended.


  • In addition, the holder of a number assignment must pay annual fees. The amount of these contributions is determined in accordance with the Frequency Protection Contribution Ordinance (FSBeitrV), as amended. The basis for determining the contribution rates is the actually incurred contributable expenses/costs in a calendar year for the respective user group. These can only be determined retrospectively. A contribution forecast is not possible. The costs are not constant, as they depend on various and variable factors, such as the level of disruption in the relevant contribution year. For these reasons, the contribution rates are subject to fluctuations.

The application documents must be submitted in full within 2 weeks, otherwise the application cannot be processed and the application data will be deleted.

  • Contradiction
    • Further information on how to lodge an objection can be found in the notification or fee notice relating to your application.
  • Appeal to the administrative court

Online application:

  • Call up the online application via the federal portal verwaltung.bund.de.
  • This will guide you step by step through the necessary information.
  • To access the form, you must provide proof of your identity (BundID account / ELSTER organization account).
  • Complete the form online.
  • Upload any other documents you need to attach to the application.
  • Submit the application.
  • Alternatively, you can complete the application, print it out, sign it and send it by e-mail or post.
  • You will receive the ship station license and the notification of fees with instructions on legal remedies for download via the inbox of your account after successful verification, if you have selected this option in the application form.
  • Number allocations are subject to a fee; a fee notice for all your allocations will be made available for download at a later date via the federal user account.
  • Alternatively, the documents will be sent to you by post.

Application by post or e-mail:

  • Go to the website of the Federal Network Agency and download the form.
  • Fill in everything, save the form or print it out and send it together with the documents to the Federal Network Agency by e-mail or post.
  • You will receive the Ship Station License and the fee notice with instructions on legal remedies by post after a successful examination.
  • Applications with incorrect information will not be processed. In this case, the BNetzA will contact you for correction.
  • Existing allocations of call signs issued under the previous frequency allocations for mobile maritime and inland waterway radio stations (frequency allocation certificates) remain valid.
  • There are no plans to replace the existing certificates with new ship station licenses. Certificates issued before 01.01.2019 remain valid internationally as long as you do not make any changes to the radio station.

Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport Affairs (BMDV)

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

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