The ARRL and many other national entities recommend the NATO phonetics for Amateur Radio use as most Hams around the world recognize them. This alphabet dates from about 1955 and is approved by the International Civil Aviation Organization, the FAA and the International Telecommunication Union, and many National Amateur Leagues/Societies/Orgs. Note that different bodies prefer different spellings, so one also sees:  Alfa Juliet Juliette Oskar Viktor]. As a matter of reference -- see URL:
NATO phonetic alphabet From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

The NATO phonetic alphabet was developed in the 1950s to be intelligible (and pronounceable) to all NATO allies. It replaced other phonetic alphabets, for example the US military Joint Army/Navy Phonetic Alphabet ("able baker") and several versions of RAF phonetic alphabets. It is sometimes inappropriately referred to as International Phonetic Alphabet, which is actually the official name of an alphabet used in linguistics created in the late nineteenth century.

The NATO phonetic alphabet is now widely used in business and telecommunications in Europe and North America, and has been approved by ICAO for use in international civil aviation. It has been adopted by the ITU,  (many radio operators will refer to the NATO phonetics as ITU phonetics). Although it consists of English words, its letter codewords can easily be recognized by speakers of languages other than English.

The NATO phonetic alphabet is generally understood by Amateurs in all countries. Used when giving your callsign or passing information that must be spelled out for clarity. For example, AC6V should sign ALPHA CHARLIE SIX VICTOR

A - Alfa
B - Bravo
C - Charlie
D - Delta
E - Echo
F - Foxtrot
G - Golf
H - Hotel
I - India
J - Juliet
K - Kilo
L - Lima
M - Mike 
N - November
O - Oscar
P - Papa
Q - Quebec
R - Romeo
S - Sierra
T - Tango
U - Uniform
V - Victor
W - Whiskey
X - X-Ray
Y - Yankee
Z - Zulu 

These Are Unofficial Phonetics Used By Many DXers

Compiled By AC6V (After listening to DXers for 25 years)


Funny Phonetics which are memorable and easy to recall - like Karl # Always Killing Time. W # Empty Alcohol Jugs. Wrong phonetics but very very common on VHF repeaters and HF Contests. Kilowatt # Blue Oyster.
W # Big Kilowatt !!!

WWII Phonetics: Some old timers insist on the WWII phonetics: Able Baker Charlie Dog Easy Fox George How Item Jig King Love Mike Nan Oboe Peter Queen Roger Sugar Tare Uncle Victor William X-ray Yoke Zebra. And these guys are always tuning after a CQ Call !!

Civil Entity Phonetics. Some hams use the police/fire phonetics but many don't use or understand these: Adam Boy Charlie David Edward Frank George Henry Ida John King Lincoln Mary Nora Ocean Peter Queen Robert Sam Tom Union Victor William X-ray Young Zebra 
And a lot of other Boy/Girl names depending on locale

Make Em Up Phonetics: Then we have Hams who don't know any of these and you might hear 
Name is Tim - Texaco Indigo Macy's Actually heard this one!