From spelling your last name to airline confirmation codes, we frequently have to read a series of letters to someone at a call center over the phone. But many letters sound similar. One way to make your call center encounters more efficient is to use a Phonetic Alphabet Military Cheatsheet.
Having trouble communicating things like usernames, VINs, account numbers or even spelling your last name over the phone? You should try to memorize the Military Phonetic Alphabet. Learning the Phonetic Alphabet will save you time, reduce stress and have call center agents singing your praises.
QUICK REFERENCE: Alfa, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Echo, Foxtrot, Golf, Hotel, India, Juliett, Kilo, Lima, Mike, November, Oscar, Papa, Quebec, Romeo, Sierra, Tango, Uniform, Victor, Whiskey, X-ray, Yankee, Zulu.
The Phonetic Alphabet’s Military Origins
The Phonetic Alphabet has been used for decades by the US Military, NATO, Police, Coast Guard, and other organizations. Instead of verbally speaking letters when communicating via phone or radio, words from the military phonetic alphabet are substituted. For example, if you want to communicate a “J”, say Juliet, not Jim. Why? Words with common sounds, like “Jim”, can easily be mistaken for Slim, Been, or Rim. The words in the military alphabet code have been carefully chosen for their unique sounds.
The NATO Phonetic Alphabet
The 26 words in the NATO version of the phonetic alphabet are easy to remember. You probably already know Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, and Delta. Here’s a Phonetic Alphabet Military Cheatsheet for easy reference. Please print or bookmark this page.
Don’t try to make up your own Phonetic Alphabet Military Cheatsheet or substitute your own “funny” versions of words. A Phonetic Alphabet is a helpful tool and an international standard. Any deviations will be underappreciated by everyone.
Why You Should Care About the Phonetic Alphabet And Memorize It
I’m currently shopping around for new insurance coverage and recently had to give my car’s VIN number over the phone multiple times. It was a disaster. There was a lot of repeating and a lot of frustration on both sides of the phone.
“I’m sorry sir, was that an M or N?”
“R as in Rob? Or B as in Bob?”
“I’m sorry sir. Can you please repeat the whole number for the fifth time?”
But on my last conversation, I pulled up the Phonetic Alphabet and was able to give my VIN over the phone in one clean attempt. The guy on the other end of the phone was so happy. Hopefully, it will help you too.
Phonetic Alphabet Military Version: Helpful Mobile Apps For Quick Reference
If you find yourself needing a Phonetic Alphabet Military Cheatsheet on a regular basis, you might want to bookmark this article or download a mobile app. The NATO Phonetic Alphabet (iOS) is free in the iTunes Store.