Once you have passed the tests and received your license, you'll
need a radio. One or another of the major sources of amateur radio
equipment almost always have some kind of sale on "hand-held" radios
that can be powered by some number of AAA, AA, C, or D Nicad
batteries. Three that I have dealt with are RadioShack.com, Ham
Radio Outlet, and Amateur
Once you have completed all these steps, you'll be ready for
communications without a telephone network.
But what about talking (or communicating, more generally), with
those who aren't right nearby? I strongly recommend that you
bite the bullet and learn Morse code, so
that you can upgrade your license and get access to the (relatively)
reliable long-range frequencies. Here are
the instructions on how to do that.
If you have any questions about amateur radio, you can email me.
My amateur radio FAQ page
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