[CQ-Contest] Is QSL Bureau pertinent in today HAM Radio

Carol Richards n2mm at comcast.net
Wed Mar 28 13:57:18 PDT 2012

Here are some of my thoughts on the issue>

Qsl'ing can certainly be cost prohitive, especially when I average 30k qso's 
per year. With that in mind:

1.I have up-loaded all 270k qso's to LOTW ( just since 1991) The other 30 
years of qsos are still in paper logbooks ( 35 log books and 20 years of 
paper contest logs) Maybe when I retire, all will go into LOTW.

2. I still answer all qsl direct requests. (with or without postage)

3. I generally will not answer bureau requests from contests. I make at 
least 15000 contest qsos/year At $70/1000 to print the cards and the bureau 
fees + postage to send, I am looking at almost $1000 each year to answer 
cards from contests. I am sorry but I am not one of those 1%'ers. 
Furthermore, there are a number of dx stations that send me 5-10 qsls for 
every contest every year via the bureau.

4. If a dx station really needs my card, even from a contest,  and sends me 
an e-mail with his request, I will honor it. ( my e-mail address is on 

5. I will use the bureau as much as possible for my needed outgoing cards, 
but many stations will only qsl direct with $$/IRC's.

6. I counted around 100 band entities on LOTW that I need confirmed. The 
problem is that I have already sent direct requests to 85% of them. I think 
that they are just keeping the $$. With that in mind, I refuse to expend any 
more money for a non-qsl.

7. I enjoy the old-fashioned paper cards. Many are quite beautiful. Some are 
comical, and some are close to being X-rated. I would miss all of that 
enjoyment with LOTW confirmations.

I grew up in this hobby believing that the final courtesy of a qso is a qsl. 
Obviously there are too many who do not share my beliefs. Enough has been 
written on the low percentage of returns from various countries and even 
here from our brethren statesiders.


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