Licensing information for Costa Rica - TI including Cocos Island - TI9

Prepared by: OH2MCN - Veke & W7TSQ - Bob & TI5RLI - David & N4CD - Bob & N7DF/TI9M - Larry & TI2/NI6E – Peter & 9M6DXX - Steve
Status: June 1996, Jan '98, Dec '99 links added, Jun '01, Feb '03, Aug '04, ‘08

Intro: You can get your license to operate /TI* with no problems. For TI9 see the blue additions (Feb '03).

PTT (from ITU data base):
Control Nacional de Radio (CNR)
Ministerio de Gobernación y Policía
75 m Norte del la Antigua Pulperia La Luz
Barrio Escalante
a mano derecha casa blanca

about 2 kilometers east of the center of San Jose.

Telephone +506 2586 4000 / +506 2286 2355
Internet Email comunitaria at

Paperwork needed:
Available from CNR requests:
- Name
- Passport
- Operating Location
- Operating equipment including serial numbers
- Authentication lawyer
- Stamps (available in some book stores and banks)
- Photograph (passport size)
- Photocopy of Passport
- Photocopy of Foreign License

The best way to get a license:
Costa Rica allows foreign amateurs to operate "/TI#" (# is number of the region where you will be operating) but they are fairly insistent that the amateur be from a country with which they have a reciprocal agreement. For example: JH1NBN was allowed to operate as JH1NBN/TI5 because he had a license from the U.S. (KE3KL). He would have had problems getting the permission with just his JA call because there is no agreement with Japan. You must be present to get the license (there is no provision for mailing licenses). The whole process, however, only takes a few hours. It is best to take a Spanish speaking translater (best is a local amateur who knows the ropes). If you can get the form and fill it out in advance you can save time. Calls with the TI prefix are reserved for citizens and residents who have taken the local test. (This is the current practice -- it was not that way in the past.)
Less than $2.00 US for the license. Up to $20.00 US for the authentication by a lawyer of your application (including stamps -- similar to postage stamps).
Special calls:
No "/TI9" licenses are given under the present administration. For a foreigner to operate from Cocos Island he must be with a locally licensed amateur (citizen or resident) who is then responsible for the operation. Licensing for operations involves three permissions -- two can be done by the amateur, the others must be done by the boat captain. Those permissions are: license (CNR), permission to stay (parks department) and anchorage permission (also parks department).
How long before you can operate?
License restrictions:
Useful local contacts:
For further details contact TI5RLI, Dave Gregory:
74617.1577 at
Places to operate from:
No special "gifts" are requested -- the government here calls that corruption and has laws against it. It does happen with the police and others but there is risk to the officer and the person making the "gift" (bribe).

David L Gregory, TI5RLI / TI9X and

W7TSQ at

Addition from TI5RLI:

There is one error in the information on licensing that must be corrected.

It is NOT possible to get a /TI9 call. Only TI9... is acceptible (TE9... also) hence the requirement that a resident or citizen go as part of any group.

Warren Murillo has retired or is in the process of retiring from government employement so there is someone else in the chair now. He is a lawyer but I don't have his name handy right now.


Addition From: "ROBERT A VOSS" <TELEGRAPHY at>
Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 18:56:05 -0500

The information for Costa Rica is not correct. To get a TI license (other than TI9) you go to the Ministry and you bring:
Letter (preferably in Spanish), asking for permission,
giving your in-country address(es),
period of operation.
you provide:
one copy of passport,
one copy of license, and they keep both. you bring along:
original of license,
original passport (they did not even look at mine)
15 minutes later, no fee, you have license.
I did this April 2001. (N4CD/TI2, April 4-17, 2001) see < > for my story and that of German ham who found things the exact same way. Bob Voss, N4CD

Addition From: "Larry N7DF" <n7df at>
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 2003

When our group got to Costa Rica for the Cocos DXpedition in February 2002 we were each one granted a /TI9 license and a group call for TI9M. All that was required was a letter from a resident Costa Rican licensee, copies of our passports and home licenses.

The TI9** calls are only issued to resident Costa Rican licensees but there is no restriction on the /TI9 operations. You only need the wherewwithal to get to Cocos Island and the permits to land on the Island.

See also the TI9M website at

Addition From: Peter Putnam [mailto: ni6e at
Date: June 18, 2004 


The address you offer to those hoping to obtain a permit to operate in Costa Rica is no longer correct:
The old address: Control Nacional de Radio (CNR), Ministerio de Gobernación y Policía
150 metros Sur del Cementerio de San Pedro
Montes de Oca
1344-1011 Y, SAN JOSE

changed in mid 2003 to:
Control Nacional de Radio (CNR)
Ministerio de Gobernación y Policía
75 m Norte del la Antigua Pulperia La Luz
Barrio Escalante
a mano derecha casa blanca

about 2 kilometers east of the center of San Jose.

Otherwise, the info provided by N4CD is correct.


DX Holiday TI - Costa Rica

Travel info: DESTINATION COSTA RICA and subWWWay to Costa Rica

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