Scanning Overseas

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sflmonitor

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Does anyone have information on scanning in Europe? Specifically, I am interested in Austria and Holland. I will be travelling there soon and hate to have my 396 taken at customs.

The StrongSignals site has some information on the subject, but I wanted something more official.

Joe
 

kb2vxa

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I would think that the countries in question have information offices, good starting points for official information. The Internet is "the information highway" so why not take a virtual trip before your departure? You're not likely to get reliable info here let alone anything official, you don't ask a plumber how to replace a light switch.

BTW, don't be surprised if you find your scanner useless even if you speak the language. While some radio systems are analog many digital ones use formats that can't be decoded by a scanner even if it's not encrypted, that much I know from my "foreign correspondance" via Amateur Radio. On the other hand many countries prohibit such monitoring so it looks like you have quite a bit of homework to do.
 

brandon

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I've taken a radio twice to Europe, however it was a 2m/220/440 HT. Never had any problems with Customs but I believe some countries have laws against them.

In the UK I listened to Heathrow Airport and stumbled across law enforcement comms in the 450 MHz area. I also listened to Amsterdam and Frankfurt ATC while staying near those airports.

As Warren said you best bet is to check Google since each country will have their own laws about it. I believe that listening to police is illegal in the UK and other countries.... I didn't realize that at the time but that is why you never see any online PD feeds from that country.
 

LarryN

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This is not a flame, please do not be offended.

Why not try posting this in the Europe Forum found at the very bottom of the Forums page?
 

BaLa

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Illegal to listen to anything that's not intended for the public in germany.
That didn't stop me though.

Customs didn't seem to worried about it at Stuttgart Airport either.
 

sflmonitor

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LarryN said:
This is not a flame, please do not be offended.

Why not try posting this in the Europe Forum found at the very bottom of the Forums page?

Good idea. I completely missed that.

Thanks to everyone for the input.
 

ocscan

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Please post any info/links you get...I always travel with my scanner(s), albet cautiously. I don't want to bring them where I should'nt. Airlines are not always helpfull.
 

sflmonitor

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Just got back from Vienna. I did take my scanner. Customs actually saw it but did not ask about it. So I guess they were not too concerned. As for radio traffic, I had very little time to monitor. I found no trunking systems as we know them. I remember reading that Europe has a Tetra system. Anyhow, I found most of the conventional traffic on VHF, but since I don't speak the language, I can't tell what it was. Aviation was cool though. They actually communicate mostly in english.
 

morfis

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JoeH said:
Does anyone have information on scanning in Europe? Specifically, I am interested in Austria and Holland. I will be travelling there soon and hate to have my 396 taken at customs.

The StrongSignals site has some information on the subject, but I wanted something more official.

Joe
You should have no problems with Austria & The Netherlands in terms of customs. I regularly take my scanners around Europe and have only encountered problems in Belgium and France. In both cases the fact that I carry my amateur radio licence and could show that the scanners only had local amateur frequencies in the memories (well some memories!) smoothed over the problem quite quickly.
I have found that asking officials for the strict legal position doesn't often get the correct legal answer.
 

morfis

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JoeH said:
Just got back from Vienna. I did take my scanner. Customs actually saw it but did not ask about it. So I guess they were not too concerned. As for radio traffic, I had very little time to monitor. I found no trunking systems as we know them. I remember reading that Europe has a Tetra system. Anyhow, I found most of the conventional traffic on VHF, but since I don't speak the language, I can't tell what it was. Aviation was cool though. They actually communicate mostly in english.
There are plenty of "American" trunked systems in use around Europe but other open format systems are more popular (MPT1327, TETRA etc).
English is the official language for civil aircraft communications internationally.
 

w4rez

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morfis said:
There are plenty of "American" trunked systems in use around Europe but other open format systems are more popular (MPT1327, TETRA etc).
English is the official language for civil aircraft communications internationally.
A bit o/t but this reminds me about a story I read once. It may be urban legend. I was lucky enough to find it on http://users.snowcrest.net/wb6fzh/tcair1.html ...

A Pan Am 727 flight waiting for start clearance in Munich overheard the following:

Lufthansa (in German): "Ground, what is our start clearance time?"

Ground (in English): "If you want an answer you must speak in English."

Lufthansa (in English): "I am a German, flying a German airplane, in Germany. Why
must I speak English?"

Unknown voice from another plane (in a beautiful British accent): "Because you
lost the bloody war."
 

sflmonitor

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morfis said:
There are plenty of "American" trunked systems in use around Europe but other open format systems are more popular (MPT1327, TETRA etc).
I did a search of the VHF, some UHF and 800 MHz bands and failed to locate any trunked systems in my area (Vienna). However, I forgot to search the 410-430, 385-399 MHz bands (which are also allocated for civil systems in Europe). Maybe that's were public safety is located in Austria.

I also remember seeing UHF radios being used by immigration/customs officers in Amsterdam but did not have time to monitor.
 
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