Worth getting GMRS radio with no FCC license?

Hi Guys,
I have 2 old motorola talkabout FRS radios, but because they still operate on alkalines and have a low communication range I started looking into “newer” GMRS models.
I did some reasearch just to find in the end, I guess, that unless I am getting the FCC license it’s not worthy buying a new paid of 2-way radio counting on getting the extra range (20+ miles, some claim)

If I am not mistaken it seems like the non FCC license required channels will run over FRS, so pretty much I would get the same range of my 8 year old FRS radio. Is this correct? Or is the technology better now, that even restricted to the 7 FRS/GMRS channels I will still get a little bit better range compared to the old talkabout?

BTW: I am taking the radios for a ski trip in chile. Would it work over GMRS over there?

I really appreciate your help.

On FRS channels, radios are limited to half a watt of output power which is usually good for .25 to .5 miles of range. You will find that most radios do not actually come close to this half a watt maximum power on the FRS channels, so it is true that some are better than others. Even with the difference in power, you are not likely to see a huge difference. I wouldn’t recommend that you upgrade if you are only looking to use FRS.

As far as GMRS, you only need a license if you plan to use the GMRS channels in the United States. Chile may have different laws entirely governing which frequencies are allowed to be used by consumers, and they may or may not require some type of license. You should check communications laws in Chile to find out if use of the GMRS frequencies are allowed there, and if there are any licensing requirements.


If I am planning to not get a license and use only FRS channels, but still want to buy a new radio because of some new features, I guess I just need to look for the one with the strongest FRS wattage, right?
Do you happen to know which ones have strong FRS power?

Thanks so much