The courtesy of the QSO is a QSL. “I’m good on QRZ” or “QSL via the Bureau”.
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The 2 most common ways of QSL’ing is either Direct or by the Bureau. If you are really working towards WAS or DXCC the direct method would be better and faster, but can run into some $. Look him up on QRZ and send your card direct. A SASE for U.S. stations or a SAE with a dollar or two in it for DX stations. Recently the use of EQSL has grown, but not all organizations recognize them. Some EQSL’s we have received:
You can register with EQSL. You might have some cards waiting.
For Direct QSL’ing
You can order QSL cards from a variety of sources: rusprint.com qslman.com
qslfactory.com qslshop.com octavia.com cheapqsls.com
There are some programs available so you can design and print your own. Some
Logging programs have the capability to print qsl’s.
Within the U.S. The ARRL DX QSL Bureau System is make up of call area bureaus that act as central clearing houses for QSL cards arriving from foreign countries. These INCOMING bureaus are free. ARRL membership is not required. Most countries have “outgoing” QSL bureaus that operate much like our service. The cards are packaged and shipped to the appropriate country.
To Claim your QSL’s send a 5 x 71/2 or 6 x 9 inch self addressed, stamped envelope to the bureau serving your call sign district. Print your call in the upper left corner of the envelope. Place your mailing address on the front. A suggested way to send envelopes is to affix a first class stamp and if you may have more than 1 oz of cards, clip extra postage to the envelope. Some bureaus sell envelopes and postage credits. Check with your local bureau. These people are volunteers. A “Good job and thanks” email to your sorter every now and then is a good idea. Be sure to follow the do’s and don’ts of this service. Keep envelopes on file and the proper postage, notify them of any address change, call sign change etc. Don’t send domestic (US to US) cards to the bureau or your Outgoing cards to the Incoming Bureau. Don’t expect that card from Lithuania to arrive quickly. It may take over a year.
W5 QSL Bureau
P.O. Box 2591
Claremore, OK 74018-2591
Email is: email@example.com
Webpage is: http://www.okdxa.org/buro
Read the QSL Bureau System instructions on the ARRL website to make sure you fully understand the use of the incoming bureau. Look at the W5 website to determine their practices and to look up your “sorter” You can also see how many envelopes you have on file and the # of QSL cards that are waiting to be sent to you.
One of the greatest bargains of membership in the ARRL is being able to use the Outgoing QSL Service to conveniently send your DX QSL cards overseas to foreign QSL bureaus. Your ticket for using this service is proof of ARRL membership and complying with the fee schedule. If you are not a big DX’er you can send 10 cards or less for $1.50 If you need to send more then include $2.50 for 11 to 20 cards, $3.75 for 21 to 30 cards. After this it’s $5 for the first ½ pound (approx. 75 cards) then $10 for one pound.
Your cards are sorted by the Outgoing QSL service staff and usually shipped within 3 weeks. This service handles approximately two million cards a year.
ARRL Outgoing QSL Service
225 Main St.
Newington, CT 06111-1494
Height 2 ¾ to 4 ¼ inches, and a width of 4 ¾ to 6 ¼ inches.
IARU Region 2 has suggested 3 ½ x 5 ½ as optimum
Approximately 225 countries are served by this service but there are some that are not. Check the ARRL website for these. A few limit the forwarding of cards only to amateurs that belong to that countries radio society. These are listed also.
Cards can be sent to QSL Managers. In this case sort the cards using the Managers call sign rather than the station you worked.
SWL cards can be forwarded through the QSL Service also.
QSL cards are interesting and fun. Make use of them. They are also regarded as the courtesy of having the QSO…..