MarineTraffic makes use of its extensive terrestrial Network of AIS-receiving Stations to pick-up AIS signals from any vessel that sails within its range. If you are the owner of a private vessel, you can install an AIS transponder on board in order to transmit AIS messages containing your vessel's positions and details!
The installation of an AIS transponder on smaller vessels is optional. Moreover, you are allowed to use a CLASS B AIS transponder. Class B transponders are cheaper than Class A and they are addressed to the non-SOLAS compliant vessels (e.g. small leisure or fishing vessels, less than 300 GT). The price of a Class B transponder varies from EUR 700 to 2000.
Make sure to update it with all the necessary static information regarding your vessel's details such as her Name, MMSI number etc. Try to be accurate and precise when doing so, as this information will be displayed on the MarineTraffic pages (once your vessel is recorded in the MarineTraffic database) and it will be much easier for you or for other users to track her.
Then, all you have to do is to leave your AIS transponder on! One of our Stations will eventually pick-up your transponder's signal for the first time. A new record will be automatically created containing both dynamic and static information regarding your vessel and will be updated any time that a new AIS signal will be picked-up. This way, you will be able to use our search pages to find your vessel (and her recorded positions, her voyage details etc.) or track her down on the Live Map!
If your vessel is not equipped with an AIS-receiver, there are some alternative ways of reporting your own positions. For example, you may use the OnCourse/mAIS application on your smartphone or mobile device (iPhone/iPad or Android) on board to report the position of your vessel directly to MarineTraffic, without the requirement of operating an AIS transponder.
There are at least 5 alternative methods that enable position reporting for your vessel. If you are interested in finding them out and reporting your own position, you can read through the corresponding section.