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[CQ-Contest] Outgoing "W" QSL's

Subject: [CQ-Contest] Outgoing "W" QSL's
From: kg5u@hal-pc.org (Dale L. Martin)
Date: Mon Feb 16 00:44:35 1998

>TOMK5RC@aol.com wrote:
>> Are there any more outgoing QSL services that will take
>> cards? I
>> have a stack of cards from USA guys who did not send SAE/SASE
that I
>> would
>> answer if I could just stick them in one envelope and pay a
fee. The
>> county
>> hunters used to have several of these services but I can't
find any
>> listed in
>> the mags or on the net.
>The USA QSL Buro ws the only outlet, but they gave it up several
>ago stating there was a lack of interest.  I found that out when
>received my 2" stack of cards back.  There are two Buros for the
>Hunters, however, they are not general-purpose Buros for any US
>I would urge you to put stamps on the cards and mail them.
After all,
>isn't "a QSL the final courtesy of the QSO" or doesn't that
apply to
>contest Q's?
>Fred Roberts, W6TKV


As a QSL manager, a contester, DX'er, and rag chewer, I would
like to comment:

First: Yes. It is the 'final courtesy.'  However, it shouldn't
cause the recipient of the 'courtesy' to have to dig deeper in
his/her pocket than necessary.

Whenever I initiate the QSL card exchange after a QSO, be it DX,
stateside, whatever, I use an SASE or SAE/IRC/$, as appropriate.

By sending someone my card and asking for their's in return I am
asking them to spend their $ for something I want.  By not
including an SASE, I am raising the ante from about a nickel to
at least a quarter (~$.05 for the card; $.20 for the stamp).  I
consider that to be discourteous, an affront to their goodwill of
having worked me, and downright egotistical to expect them to
spend their hardearned money on me.

I return my card to those who send me a card with no
SASE/SAE-IRC, etc.  But, I'm not happy about it.

As a QSL manager who handles a few hundred cards a month,
non-SASE accompanied cards add up to a lot of time, effort, and

It costs our club $0.05 (~the cost of the card) to return our
card to a QSL sender in his/her SASE.

It costs our club $0.40 (~card cost, envelope cost, stamp cost)
to return our card to a QSL sender who did not provide an SASE.

Big difference, wouldn't you say?

(Fortunately, there are some folks out there that recognize the
financial situation of clubs/special events stations and stuff a
dollar or so in their envelope along with their SASE.  I always
include in the donor's return envelope a decal or patch I am able
to glom from our public affairs office or from the astronaut
office.  The non-SASE accompanied cards are handled the very
last, after all other cards have been mailed.)

I have an insert I put in envelopes I send back to the QSL
senders who didn't provide an SASE with their card to W5RRR.  It
says that while the exchange of a QSL is the final act of
courtesy of a QSO, it is also expensive for club and special
event stations and to please consider using an SASE for furture
club or special event stations worked.

I'm going to change it to  'for individuals, clubs, and special
events' after this.  It should be used for all direct QSL'ing.

Personally, in this day and time, I find the whole QSL thing a
bit silly.  I look forward to when we can do it electronically.

Dale, kg5u

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