Islands on the Air - Help - About Validation
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Validating an Operation

Information on validation procedures is given at Section F of the Programme Rules. For answers to frequently asked questions, please see the Guide To Validating Your Operation (PDF Format).

In summary, if you plan to operate from a currently unnumbered group or from a "rare" numbered group, defined as one that is credited to less than 10% of members on the central IOTA database, you will need to provide supporting paperwork in the form of evidence of presence on the island, and copies of any permits required and of the licence if a special callsign is used. Validation may also be required in the case of operations where it is known that licensing or operating/landing permission is required.

You can check whether or not the group is unnumbered by referring to IOTA Group Listings and whether or not it is "rare" by referring to Most Wanted IOTAs, both on this website. Latest available data shows that no numbered EU IOTAs fall into the "rare" category. So, in the case of operations from any European group (except the unnumbered Isle of Rockall), you can take it that we do not normally need to see supporting documentation. This does not mean that you can dispense with getting permits and proof of presence, since you may be asked for them should there be a challenge. Don't be surprised, such challenges do occur!

For operations outside Europe, check Most Wanted IOTAs if you suspect that the IOTA group might be sufficiently rare to require validation - the vast majority of IOTAs are not. Send validation only where it is shown as required or is requested by us. Please do not send a wodge of paperwork "just in case it's needed". We are running out of storage space .... and we frankly do not have the time to check more cases than the rules require!

One rider on all this. We do reserve the right to ask for validation for operations from very remote islands, eg in the Arctic or Asia, which are exceptionally difficult or expensive to reach, even if they fall a little outside the rare category. Attention is particularly focused on operations that were not notified to us in advance and appear from just a few cards submitted or from a check of the DX Summit search-machine to have been exceptionally small-scale. It is reasonable in such cases to make the necessary enquiries to satisfy ourselves that the operation was genuine.