Best Two-Way Radios Reviewed & Rated for Quality
When you are a runner, whether it’s on short runs or racing a marathon, accidents can happen. That is why it’s extremely important to have a way other than your cell phone to get in touch with other people. That’s where good quality two-way radios come in. In a world, that is now chaotic at best, you never know what is going to happen, so it’s important to be able to reach help if it’s needed. Since you aren’t always guaranteed cell phone reception, especially if you run off the beaten path, it’s a good idea to have a high-quality one with you and on the other end of that conversation to have someone you can trust.
- Small With a Comfortable Fit
- Weather Scans for Safety
- Crystal Clear Sound Quality
However, that’s not the only reason you would want a way to communicate effectively as a runner. If you are running long-distance or any other type of racing, it’s a good idea to be able to keep in touch with the staff and medical professionals, just in case they are needed. If you have been considering purchasing a set for your track team or just to have when you go out on solitary runs as a way to keep in touch with someone should the unexpected happen, then you need to know that not all of these products are the same. There are different styles, different brands and they come in different ranges and weights. Of course, each of these has different prices and some are weather resistant, where others are not. There is a lot to consider when you are choosing the best two-way radios to meet your needs as a runner who takes their run off the beaten path.
10 Best Two-Way Radios
With 16 pre-programmed channels to choose from, you shouldn't have a problem being able to reach anyone when you need too. They also feature a mechanical rotary switch dialer, so you can tune in the channel you need to contact someone else.
High-Quality Built-In Speakers
Each radio has a high-quality built-in speaker that ensures the voice you hear on the other end, and your voice as well comes through crystal clear and without interference. They also work up to five miles if there is nothing obstructing them, a little less if the area you are in is congested.
Cost and Value
These are cost-effective, especially since there are four in the pack. They also come with earpieces and fit comfortably in your hand. The range is good, so they are well worth the money you will spend to buy them.
4 radios included
Comfortable to hold
Crystal clear range
Solid battery life
Many users report the battery life of these being too short
Some users reported that the set only picked up clearly for a couple of miles
These offer two different ways to obtain battery life. You can use the rechargeable battery pack that is included or you can use AAA batteries instead, whichever is easiest and most convenient for you at the time.
Not only does this two pack have double battery options, they are also water resistant, making them a great thing to have during the summer when you sweat badly as you run and they feature a backlit LCD display for easy viewing as well.
Cost and Value
With its water-resistant featured, backlit LCD display and the choice of dual battery options, this set of is well worth the money you spend to purchase them.
Dual battery options
Backlit LCD display
Features 36 channel frequencies
Some users reported not being able to get range coverage after a couple of miles
Some customers reported the batteries giving out easily after charging
This set features a low battery alarm that warns you when the battery is low and needs to be charged. With this handy feature, you won't be caught out on a run and the battery die on your radio.
Features 16 Channels
Not only does this set come with a low battery alarm, it also allows you to catch frequency over 16 different channels, ensuring you can reach whoever is on the other end with ease. It has a 400 to 470 MHz frequency to recommend it.
Cost and Value
This long-range set is one of the best-priced sets on the list. They feature 16 channels, crystal clear sound and even have a low battery alarm. This set is well worth checking into for sure.
16 channel frequencies
Crystal clear transmission
Great battery life
Features a low battery alarm
Many users reported the charger for the radios as being rickety
Some users reported the set coming with wires broken
This pack of 4, comes in your choice of four different colors. Those color choices include red, black, orange, or silver.
The radios feature LCD displays that make it easy to see them at night, whether you are sitting on the front porch or on your evening run.
Cost and Value
Considering this pack consists of four two-way radios, and has 22 channel frequencies it is a great price. Add in the ability to read the LED screen at night and you have a winner.
LED display for night use
Comes in four different color choices
Long range capable
Some users reported the volume as being too low
Some customers complained that the knobs broke easily
This two-way radio features a durable body, so it can be taken outside and used, without you having to worry about it falling apart. Many walkie-talkies are made of flimsy materials, but this one isn't, making it perfect to take on your daily runs.
For each of the 10 phones in the package, each comes with their own earpiece and their own charger so you don't have to charge on at a time.
Cost and Value
One of the higher priced on the list, this one is worth the price because there are 10 two-way radios in the package. Each comes with its own accessories, which is an added bonus.
10 to a pack
Affordable for what they do
Crystal clear transmissions
Many users reported the range not being as far as they needed it to be
Some users reported that the two-way radios wouldn't hold a charge
Enjoy 8 to 12 hours of continuous use with these durable products. They also come with a separate charging base for each.
Features a Built-In LED Flashlight
This set features built-in LED flashlights on each radio so that you can see if you are ever out on the run or the track at night.
Cost and Value
You get four with this set and they come with built-in flashlights, so this in itself makes them worth the money being asked.
Includes chargers for all phones
Includes built-in LED flashlights
Some users report that the belt clip on the radios is flimsy
Some customers reported that the range is bad with these.
This walkie-talkie features a voice scrambler so that you can keep your conversations secret whenever the need arises, like if you are on a run and decide to meet and don't want everyone knowing the meeting place.
This two-way radio features a super slim design that makes it easy to hold. The included earpiece also makes it possible for you to talk and still concentrate on your run handsfree.
Cost and Value
This two-way radio is very affordable and a good one for the price. If you are looking for something simple and easy to use to take on your runs, then this is the two-way radio to meet your needs.
Includes belt clips
Earpieces included for hands-free talking
Many users reported that the sound quality of these is dismal
Some users reported that the two-way radios were cheaply made
There are a few extras included with this package. These include headphones, belt clips, desktop chargers, and wrist straps for both phones.
Each radio includes an LED flashlight as well for night use and the capacity for long-range talking, making it the perfect setting to choose if you are camping and go for a run to keep in touch with people at your campsite.
Cost and Value
This set is reasonably priced, especially if you add in the extras that are included. You will want to give this set of walkie-talkies a try.
Comes in two color choices
Includes a voice scrambler
Some users reported that it is illegal to use these two-way radios without a license
Some users reported that the set won't hold a charge
While you want a lightweight product, you also want one that is solid, durable, and rugged. This set has that in spades. If you are looking for durable, then this is for you.
Simple to Use
This set is simple to use with no complicated programming required. Simply pull your walkie-talkies out of the box, charge, and begin using!
Cost and Value
A little higher than some on our list, just the fact that they don't have to be programmed in a complicated manner makes this worth the money you spend! Add in, the lightweight, yet rugged design and you're set with a winner for sure.
Rugged and durable
Easy to use
Super affordable for the price
Many users report that these don't hold a charge
Other users reported that the products are smaller than expected
This set comes with a power-saving function that allows you to extend your battery life if your radio starts to die before you can make it home to put it on the included charger.
Features a Built-In LED Torch
This set features a built-in LED torch that makes it possible to see if you are caught out at night on a run and need to make it home. It's also perfect for seeing into those out of the way places on your run if you should have too.
Cost and Value
This set of two walkie-talkies are great for any runner who is looking for a way to communicate with home base. They are affordable, durable, and worth giving a try.
Features a built-in LED torch
Features a power-saving function
Some users reported that the two-way radios only came with one earpiece and one belt clip
Some users said that this set couldn't be used outside the house if you wanted to hear clearly
Criteria Used to Review & Rate the Best Two-Way Radios
So, that was the top 10 best two-way radios, rated and reviewed for quality and put in this handy-dandy buying guide for runners everywhere. Everyone knows that these sets are the best way to keep in touch over short and long distances. Whether you are out camping with the family, at a big race, or just out on your daily solitary run, you want to know that should something happen, you will be able to contact someone to do something about it.
Now, that we have determined what the best 10 sets are on this list and listed those sets and their pros and cons for you, it’s time to tell you the criteria and metrics we used to figure out the top-rated on the list. A few of the criteria we used include range, channels, whether they are waterproof or not, whether they are weather-resistant, the weight, price and much more. This should help you determine which is the best to fit your needs as a runner. The one thing you don’t want to do is go out on a run alone and have no cell service, then need someone. With a reliable, sturdy, two-way radio hanging from your jogging pants, you will be safe and secure in the knowledge that you can call someone when the need arises, or even if you just too to keep in touch.
One of the most important things to consider when you are searching for the right sets to take with you on a run or to a race is the range that walkie-talkie is capable of reaching. The options we went with are able to reach pretty long-distance ranges. You need to determine which of these has the best range and find one that will suit your needs. One thing to keep in mind is that it’s always better to have too much range, than not enough range when you are out on the track or running in the woods.
The top-rated in this buying guide range from 16 to 30 channels. The amount of channels you have is helpful when it comes to finding the best channel to avoid any type of interference when you are talking to someone. Not only do you want a variety of different channels to alternate between to find the one with the less interference, you also want a set that features private channel security codes as well. The top-rated on our list has private channel security codes to offer.
The power of the set that you choose is measured in watts and is directly tied to your radio’s transmission power and the range it gets as well. The top-rated on our list have great audio quality for crystal clear sound and great signal strength, so you don’t have to worry about reaching the person that is on the other end.
As a runner, you might be running in the drizzling rain, in the heat of the summer when you sweat the most and even occasionally get caught in a downpour, so it’s pretty important that what you choose is waterproof if possible. Depending on the type of environment you live in, this could very well be a feature you have to have in your two-way radio. Many of the top-rated ones on our list feature waterproofness as well.
Not only do you want it to be waterproof, you want one that is weather-resistant as well. You also need sets that offer access to NOAA and access to the local weather forecast when you are on a run, camping or at a big race for the day. The top-rated usually have access to one or both of these features. Do your research to determine which ones do offer these features and if they are right for your needs.
The weight of the walkie-talkies you carry is important, especially if you are going to be running. You don’t want a heavy bulky product dragging you down. There are many lightweight yet durable options on this list. These walkie-talkies are lightweight and have a slim elegant design so that you can hold it in your hand easily when you run, or even clip it to your jogging pants when it’s not in use. No one wants a bulky two-way radio bouncing against their leg as they run. It’s distracting and can hurt as well.
Many times, though you would love to buy the top of the line, that’s just not possible with the budget you are allowing yourself to purchase one to take on your runs. The top-rated on this list range from $30 to almost $200, according to the number of two-way radios that come in the package and the range, weight, and amount of channels the two-way offers. It is important to remember that though a radio doesn’t have to be expensive to operate well, you don’t want to go with a cheaply made one either. Do your research and get the best one out there for the price you can afford. Oftentimes, the price is higher on these because of the extra features that are offered. In this case, it’s best to decide what the extra features are and if they are features you can indeed do without.
While you wouldn’t think it was that important, how durable the means of communication you use on your runs is very important. If you are out on a run and you drop your radio, if its lightweight but heavy-duty you certainly have less chance of it breaking. Normal everyday wear and tear is something that is hard on these sets as well, so you want to be assured that yours is made of materials that can withstand your runs, the weather, and everyday life has to offer. The top-rated in this buying guide can do just that and are durable to boot.
Most of the top-rated products on the list comes with a few extra features. Some of these features are push-button controls, voice scramblers, VOX, voice-activated transmits, headset jacks, earpieces and more. These extra features cost a little extra to add, which will drive up the cost. You have to determine what are the most important extra features for you and work them into your budget.
These are the majority of the criteria and metrics we used to find the best two-way radios on the market today for you as a runner. Whether you are spending time with your family at the beach and you go on a run or at the biggest race of the year and you are miles down the track, you need a way to keep in touch with not only your family, but your team, and your coaches as well.
The sets on this list can do that for you. From the durability to the range and from the channels to the price, we have taken everything into consideration with this buying guide. We hope this has helped you choose the best two-way radios to take on your runs. Now, read on below for a few of the top most common questions that are often asked to be answered. Maybe your question is on the list!
No matter what type of product you are searching for, the reviews for that product are important. Make sure to check a number of the reviews on the product before you make that final, all-important decision. The top-rated on our list all have mostly positive reviews that ensure the product is something that will help you on your runs and be clear enough and have enough of a range to ensure you can use it without worry. Remember, there will always be bad reviews on anything you might purchase, so take any negative reviews with a grain of salt and do your research before making a final decision on your purchase.
Appeal and Design
Even though this product is one that you will want to take on your runs and even just out on family outings, appeal and design can still come into play for many runners. Of course, you have already determined if the product is lightweight enough for your needs, has the extra features you want and is durable enough to withstand your runs, but what about the way it feels in your hand or the way it looks? Appeal and design are just as important as any other consideration on the list. The top-rated in this guide come in a range of designs to make you happy with your choice of product.
When it comes to finding the right set to meet your needs, everything from appeal and design to the extra features included is important. Make sure that you do your research because durability is one of the key factors you want in a product that will be going with you on the trail or during a race. The top-rated here have all of that and more!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do you have to have a license to operate all brands?
A: Whether you have to have a license to operate the products on our list is determined according to the state that you live in. Many of the reviews on the top-rated stated that you have to have a license in order to operate these. It is best to check with state and federal regulations to be sure that you are obeying the law with these, just to be on the safe side.
Q: Do you need to program these when you take them out of the box?
A: There are a few of the top-rated on our list that you can take out of the box and start talking right away. There are also a few that will need to be programmed. Your best bet is to check the information on the website that you order from to see if it is easy to use or if it takes major programming instead.
Q: What is the range for most of these products?
A: The range that you can reach with your set differs with the brand and type you purchase. The top-rated on our list has different range types. It’s important to look at the range type before you purchase, and it’s important to take into consideration, congested areas and other things that might interfere with the range you’re seeking.
Q: Do they come with more than one charging dock?
A: According to the brand you buy and how many two-way radios are in the package. Our top-rated walkie-talkies range from 2 to 10 in the package and most of them coming with separate charging docks, and many other accessories as well.
Q: Are all of them compatible?
A: The set that comes in the package of your purchase are certainly compatible, but they may not be compatible with other brands. In some cases, radios with FRS and GMRS that use the same frequencies can communicate.
Q: Where is the best place to buy one?
A: There are many different places and websites where you can buy these The top-rated picks on our list are available by simply clicking the links. It’s best to do your research to determine which is the best choice for you and the best place to buy the most affordable, yet best quality products you can find.
Q: What is the best brand on the market today?
A: There is no one brand that can be recommended as the best. The top-rated on this list are different brands and have different features, weights, ranges, and other criteria to recommend them. Glance through the list to decide which of these is right for you, not by the brand, but by what they offer you to meet your needs as a runner.
This concludes our buying guide on the best two-way radios on the market today. As a runner, it’s important to concentrate on your running, but it’s also important to concentrate on your safety at the same time. Whether you are taking a solitary run through the wooded trail behind your home, on a busy street in the city, or on the track for the main racing event of the year, you should have a reliable, durable walkie-talkie to communicate with your team or your friends and family should the need arise.