Vanity Call Signs
The FCC has a program whereby amateur operators can request a vanity call sign. Due to the fact that these now have a processing fee ($35.00) attached, it is important to reduce the possibility of the request being rejected.
The most common mistake is requesting a call sign that is already assigned. To check availability, go to RadioQTH.net Another common mistake is requesting a call sign that is not in the US-assigned sequences (AA-AL, K, N, W). New Technicians receive what is referred to as a 2x3 call sign: a two character prefix followed by the region code and three characters suffix. Shorter call signs are often related to the license class of the applicant. For instance, a 1x1 is reserved for special event stations and not available for individuals while a 2x1 or a 1x2 are reserved for Amateur Extra licensees. The call signs beginning with AA-AL are also reserved for Amateur Extras, other call signs in the A series will be rejected as they are assigned to other countries.
If you have the correct license class, you may also request the call sign of a deceased relative if it has not been reassigned.
Certain sequences are also rejected. These include requesting a call sign in Regions 11-13 (an alphabetic L, H or P in the second character of the prefix). Additional rules apply for character sequences in the requested suffix. For details, see https://www.fcc.gov/wireless/bureau-divisions/mobility-division/amateur-radio-service/amateur-call-sign-systems for further information.
Call signs can be requested by completing FCC Form 605 or asking the VE team for a systemic sequential change when passing your amateur license.
The request takes 18 days for processing and if there are multiple requests for the call sign then the FCC will randomly determine the person receiving the call sign. To check the status of filed requests, go to the AE7Q website.