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Expat, Radio, South America, Travel Tech, Uruguay

English Broadcasts in Uruguay (Get a SW Radio!)

That’s the question. Short answer, there aren’t any. Especially if you’re traveling, or living as an expat, on the cheap.

Indispensable companion: A good, compact, sensitive multiband (shortwave) radio, and a wire antenna.

Personally I have and love the Grundig G6 Aviator radio*, about the size of a pack of cigarettes. Digital tuner, 20 banks of 7 memories each, so you can organize by band. Three alarms. Sleep timer (I fall asleep to el Tango, recuerdo?) You can find it as low as $65USD online, especially for the “Buzz Aldrin Edition” – the same radio, with an image of Buzz on the Moon.

In North America I get plenty of shortwave from Europe, Central America, and Australasia with just the built in telescoping whip antenna.

Down here in the Southern Cone, where essentially zero English-language broadcasts are aimed, almost nada. Plugging in a long retractable wire antenna hung on a nail upstairs in the loft and draped down to my easy chair, I can pull in the BBC World Service broadcasts aimed towards Southern Africa. 2000 GMT, or 5pm Uruguay Standard Time (1700), I got them, weakly but understandably over headphones on both 9410kHz and 11810kHz. You can pick up a Kaito or Sangean retractable wire antenna about 10m long for under $20USD. Well worth it.

There are no doubt more to be found. I did get a bit of Radio Nederland Worldwide in English as well. Probably from their transmitter in Bonaire. When I come back down here I’m bringing the new edition of the World Radio TV Handbook (WRTH) with me. And an even longer wire.

*Link is not a referral link, just the Google shopping page. I may change it to an Amazon referral link in the future.

About Mark Mercer

Expat aging sometime-ski-bum former corporate tool. Currently living in the beachside aging resort town of Atlántida in Uruguay. Sometimes skiing and teaching in Breckenridge, Colorado, USA. Location and velocity cannot be simultaneously observed.


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