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.