The basis for this is Z – Zulu time – Zero meridian time – the same as UTC. It’s a convention to assign letters to time zones, where Z= Zero meridian and Zulu is the word that represents the letter Z when it’s used in communication. It is sometimes used in the US Military and NATO in conjunction with 24-hour clocks and is also popular in movies to reference time.
Other letters/words are used for other time zones than UTC, most based on the right or reverse order of the Alphabet. Note that ‘J’ is skipped (‘J’ – Juliet refers to the current local time of the observer). There are 25 time zones defined here, but 26 letters in the English Alphabet.
The following table lists the Military time zone abbreviations.
- Alpha Time Zone (A): UTC+01:00
- Bravo Time Zone (B): UTC+02:00
- Charlie Time Zone (C): UTC+03:00
- Delta Time Zone (D): UTC+04:00
- Echo Time Zone (E): UTC+05:00
- Foxtrot Time Zone (F): UTC+06:00
- Golf Time Zone (G): UTC+07:00
- Hotel Time Zone (H): UTC+08:00
- India Time Zone (I): UTC+09:00
- Juliet Time Zone (J): UTC+10:00
- Kilo Time Zone (K): UTC+11:00
- Lima Time Zone (L): UTC+12:00
- Mike Time Zone (M): UTC-01:00
- November Time Zone (N): UTC-02:00
- Oscar Time Zone (O): UTC-03:00
- Papa Time Zone (P): UTC-04:00
- Quebec Time Zone (Q): UTC-05:00
- Romeo Time Zone (R): UTC-06:00
- Sierra Time Zone (S): UTC-07:00
- Tango Time Zone (T): UTC-08:00
- Uniform Time Zone (U): UTC-09:00
- Victor Time Zone (V): UTC-10:00
- Whiskey Time Zone (W): UTC-11:00
- X-Ray Time Zone (X): UTC-12:00
- Yankee Time Zone (Y): UTC+00:00
- Zulu Time Zone (Z): UTC+01:00
The Military – NATO – Letter Timezones, also known as the NATO phonetic alphabet time zones, are a set of 24 time zones used by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) for military and other operational purposes. The time zones are identified by a letter of the NATO phonetic alphabet, which is used to ensure clarity and precision when communicating over the radio or other communication channels.
Each time zone is 15 degrees wide and is centered on the Prime Meridian (0 degrees longitude) and the International Date Line (180 degrees longitude). The time zones to the west of the Prime Meridian are ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), while the time zones to the east are behind UTC.
Note that the Military – NATO – Letter Timezones do not necessarily correspond to the time zones used by civilian populations in a particular region. In some cases, the Military – NATO – Letter Timezones may be offset from the local time by a few hours.
Timezones by regions
- Central America
- Indian Ocean
- North America
- South America