Congratulations for getting your license. The first thing you want to do, is get a radio. Oh my, there's so many to choose from? What do I need?
We, that have been long time Hams, recommend you join a local club. Many clubs will teach new Hams how to operate, talk, and how to have fun with amateur radio. Most clubs have membership dues that are designated for club expenses such as renting their meeting space, paying an electrical bill, maintaining radio equipment and the club repeater.
Hams have different tastes in radios, such as we do with personal automobiles. The 3 Rivers Amateur Radio Club does have "common" radios among their members, and those members do recommend those radios. There are many advantages of having the same type of radio:
A member with the same radio can help with the technical aspects - believe us, you'll mess up with the radio, we've all done that.
Radios are typically referenced in three different categories. They may be listed as a Handi-Talkie (HT) also known as a Handheld (HT), Mobile, or Base Station/Desk Top radio. All these radios can cater to almost any budget. You can get some radios with very little investment or you can spend a lot of money for one. Below is a list of the more common radios among our members:
HT's may include: Yaesu FT-60 or FT-5DR Baofeng UV-5R or BF-F8HP or UV-82 or AnyTone AT-D878UVII or Motorola RDV5100
Mobile radios include models from Yaesu, I-Com, AnyTone, TYT, or Baofeng/BTech
Popular desk top radios come from Yaesu, I-Com, and Motorola
No one radio is perfect for all people and/or situation, but there are many radios available for new HAMs as a starter radio. Whatever radio you decide on, learn it by using it and asking questions. You can always find someone within the club that will be more than happy to help.