Bill's Radio Site
(formerly Maritimes Scanning Site)

Last updated April 20, 2012

On-Board Frequencies Reportedly Used by Cruise Ships Visiting Halifax

Many vessels use on-board radios, both simplex and in repeater systems.  These radios have nothing to do with communication with vessels in general or with harbour authorities but rather are used for such internal matters as mooring, engineering, passenger management and whatever else needs to be done.    Most or all ships will have at least some of the frequencies marked as common.  Other frequencies listed have been noted on at least some of the vessels of cruise lines that call upon Halifax, but they have not necessarily been heard here.     I have not taken the time to differentiate between simplex and repeater channels or indicated specific usages or on what vessels they are used.   Note that many ships use CTCSS tones that vary from ship to ship.   It is suggested that you enter all of these frequencies into your scanner and maybe you will hear something interesting.   It is to be assumed that you should be in the vicinity of the docks to hear anything, but some on-board repeaters might carry quite some distance.   You could also take your scanner along on your next cruise.  Enter these frequencies and the VHF international marine frequencies and enjoy your scanner while eating your fill at the buffet!

One of the controversial aspects of shipboard communications is that the vessels come to various cities and countries where it is possible that the frequencies are allocated locally to someone already, or perhaps are part of another service altogether.   This is a common problem in US waters where some ship frequencies interfere with their version of GMRS.   This does not seem to be as much of a problem here in Canada where we do not have GMRS repeaters, but nevertheless some clashes do occur.   The two noted below may be of little consequence as the frequencies in question are not the most common shipboard ones.    Many of the frequencies marked as common are in fact required to be installed in some jurisdictions, notably the European union.   These frequencies are officially allocated here in Canada as well but are limited to 5 Watts and are simplex, with no repeaters.    Foreign flagged vessels may have repeaters as it is thought to be common to use them for communications with shore personnel in areas where passengers are taken ashore by small craft, or to communicate with other shore personnel such as on excursions.

457.525 Common Ship Frequency
457.55 Common Ship Frequency
457.5375 Freq used by Costco and several other Hfx area users.
457.575 Common Ship Frequency
457.6 Common Ship Frequency
464.325 Freq also used by Air Canada at airport
467.55 Common Ship Frequency
467.525 Common Ship Frequency
467.5625 FRS Ch 8 in Canada
467.575 Common Ship Frequency
467.6 Common Ship Frequency
467.6125 FRS CH 10 in Canada
467.75 Common Ship Frequency
467.775 Common Ship Frequency
467.8 Common Ship Frequency
467.825 Common Ship Frequency