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Author Topic: What is a reasonable time in which to expect a QSL card?  (Read 3946 times)
NU1O
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Posts: 2605




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« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2012, 09:49:31 PM »

Thanks for all the replies, Gentlemen.  I think I will use 4 months as my yardstick for directly sent QSLs. If nothing is received in four months I will send an email and inquire if my QSL was received.

It's been my experience most hams are very good with direct QSLs.  There is usually a valid reason when one is not received.

73,

Chris/NU1O

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N4KZ
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Posts: 594




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« Reply #16 on: August 16, 2012, 12:35:31 PM »

After 40-plus years of DXing, it's clear to me there's no such thing as a typical amount of time to wait for a card - whether it's sent direct, to a manager or through the bureau. Each situation is different. And no amount of hand wringing will change that. I've seen some very fast turnarounds. I sent a card direct to a fellow on Reunion Island. I figured a few months for a turnaround but was shocked when his card arrived back in my mailbox just 10 days after I sent mine out. Mega kudos for the French postal system. Ditto for Monk Apollo. I saw someone who indicated he had waited for months and still no reply. But I worked him on a Saturday morning on 20 meters and sent the card out on Monday. I had it back in about 2 weeks. Maybe the $5 green stamp helped a bit. On the other hand, I sent a card direct to a Russian QSL manager with at least $2 and waited and waited for a reply, which finally came through the bureau. I was hot about that one. He ripped me off. This was several years back when $2 should have been plenty for return postage. But the worst was the Czechoslovankian station operating portable from Mongolia that I worked in the 1970s when I lived in Michigan. He told me to send a card to his mother in OK-land and she would forward to him in Mongolia. I did and she did but the total turnaround on that deal was 4.5 years before I got my return card via the bureau.

Once you work'em, you're at their mercy for a return card. Patience, lots of patience.

73, N4KZ
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NU1O
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« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2012, 01:08:05 PM »

My personal opinion is that the German postal system is probably the quickest and a stamp to the US costs .75 Euros (I just received 2 from Germany today) which is about $.93 based on today's exchange rate. So, why do we have to send $2 when mailing a card to Germany?  Seems to me they are making a buck a card. Anyway, the Germans seem to do a really good job.  I can't recall with certainty anymore but I think their postal service was privatized sometime back.  That's something this country is going to have to seriously consider. We can't keep subsidizing our postal system to the tune of $5 to $10 billion a year. I have two first cousins who work for the USPS and they would vehemently disagree!

73,

Chris/NU1O
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NU4B
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Posts: 2162




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« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2012, 01:39:16 PM »

My personal opinion is that the German postal system is probably the quickest and a stamp to the US costs .75 Euros (I just received 2 from Germany today) which is about $.93 based on today's exchange rate. So, why do we have to send $2 when mailing a card to Germany?  Seems to me they are making a buck a card. Anyway, the Germans seem to do a really good job.  I can't recall with certainty anymore but I think their postal service was privatized sometime back.  That's something this country is going to have to seriously consider. We can't keep subsidizing our postal system to the tune of $5 to $10 billion a year. I have two first cousins who work for the USPS and they would vehemently disagree!

73,

Chris/NU1O

What subsidies does the post office receive?
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N2RJ
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« Reply #19 on: August 17, 2012, 06:04:05 PM »

Postage from Germany used to be pretty expensive. It was €1.70 at one time for a priority letter (what we call first class international) and I think they only cut the rates down a couple years ago.

So until the last couple of years you had to actually send $3 for a QSL card from a German station. Many of them actually recommended QSLing via bureau because all DARC members get free unlimited use of the bureau and their card sorting is all automated.

Chris' figures are a bit deceiving. The Euro used to be $1.60 at one point and who knows what will happen with the Eurozone and where the currency will go. At the $1.60 exchange rate it will be $1.20 postage cost. I doubt it's going to be as low as it is now especially with the US economy and the prospect of more QE (printing money) unless the Euro collapses. I don't know about you but jingling or even taped coins in an envelope is the best way to get it opened along the way and stolen.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2012, 06:11:42 PM by N2RJ » Logged
NU1O
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« Reply #20 on: August 17, 2012, 10:15:00 PM »


Chris' figures are a bit deceiving. The Euro used to be $1.60 at one point and who knows what will happen with the Eurozone and where the currency will go. At the $1.60 exchange rate it will be $1.20 postage cost. I doubt it's going to be as low as it is now especially with the US economy and the prospect of more QE (printing money) unless the Euro collapses. I don't know about you but jingling or even taped coins in an envelope is the best way to get it opened along the way and stolen.


The Euro could be bought for around $1.15 when it was first introduced. It could actually be bought for under $1 for about two years not too long after it was introduced.  The Euro started to gain strength right after 9/11 and it went on a six year bull run and it peaked out at about $1.60. It was not at $1.60 for more than a few months. It started weakening in 2008 with the troubles of Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain (PiGS). I think an average of $1.25 for all its years in existence would not be terribly off the mark.

I NEVER suggested putting coins in an envelope. You are the guy who keeps bringing that up.

73,

Chris/NU1O
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HS0ZJU
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Posts: 163




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« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2012, 01:08:35 PM »

Its about a 5 week turn around from my qth to the USA... Longer time would probably involve procrastination..

73 marc hs0zju
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N2RJ
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Posts: 1155




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« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2012, 01:54:46 PM »


Chris' figures are a bit deceiving. The Euro used to be $1.60 at one point and who knows what will happen with the Eurozone and where the currency will go. At the $1.60 exchange rate it will be $1.20 postage cost. I doubt it's going to be as low as it is now especially with the US economy and the prospect of more QE (printing money) unless the Euro collapses. I don't know about you but jingling or even taped coins in an envelope is the best way to get it opened along the way and stolen.


You're talking ancient history, as in 10 years worth.

The Euro could be bought for around $1.15 when it was first introduced. It could actually be bought for under $1 for about two years not too long after it was introduced.  The Euro started to gain strength right after 9/11 and it went on a six year bull run and it peaked out at about $1.60. It was not at $1.60 for more than a few months. It started weakening in 2008 with the troubles of Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain (PiGS). I think an average of $1.25 for all its years in existence would not be terribly off the mark.

I NEVER suggested putting coins in an envelope. You are the guy who keeps bringing that up.

73,

Chris/NU1O
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W9BKR
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Posts: 370




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« Reply #23 on: August 24, 2012, 03:30:30 AM »

Some CONUS ops take forever to QSL and some don't QSL at all, at least that has been my experience.
I know I run into ops that don't QSL much and likely don't have cards and you have to wait a good amount of time.
Some, I have no idea.  I have worked KC0W on 6 meters, QSL'd twice with SASEs and NADA.  So, won't be worrying about that grid.  Will work someone else from there or bypass it altogether..  not sure why no QSL but oh well.  Go figure.  I QSL 100% and any DX, I stipulate to send direct with $.  That is what I have to do for them, so the opposite should hold true also.  But waiting a couple of months to up to 6 months isn't unusual for DX cards, but usually I see them within 60 days or less when I QSL direct.  Via the BURO, who knows.
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N3QE
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Posts: 2090




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« Reply #24 on: August 24, 2012, 03:42:40 AM »

Fastest turnaround for a DX card is sometimes less than a week. e.g. QSL manager who is really on the ball and/or OQRS. I'm really super impressed with the QSL manager sends me back cards for operations I worked but didn't actually request. This happens surprisingly often! Very very impressive.

Others never come. Should the "never come" be included in the average? Seems unfair to those who reply promptly.

Sending in paper card right after a DXpedition, before cards are printed, without a donation (in case of "donors first"), regularly takes up to 6 months. If OQRS is going to happen... usually best for OQRS to become available.
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KY6R
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« Reply #25 on: August 24, 2012, 05:35:18 AM »

For a large DXpedition, I usually don't even think about getting a QSL card in less than 3 months. For indivudual DX-ers, or very small dx-peds, its variable.

Generally speaking, I never send and email or bother the QSL manager (for any sized dxped) until I've waited 3 months after sending my QSL to them.

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NU1O
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Posts: 2605




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« Reply #26 on: August 24, 2012, 07:33:50 AM »

I forgot to make one point when arguing most US hams could keep their rates at $1 instead of $2 while postage is +$1.05. What about the "profit" when overseas stamp were 97 cents and the rate before that? We were getting more than we needed for postage then so if a $1 is charged now it should balance out. I would have no problems raising rates to $2 when we get the next postage rate increase. That will likely bring us over $1.10.

That's the end of me making my case to keep rates at a buck while rates are $1.05.

73,

Chris/NU1O
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NU4B
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« Reply #27 on: August 24, 2012, 02:22:14 PM »

How long to wait for a QSL?

I just received my QSL for a 10m QSO with 9K2USA from Sept. 17, 2001.

And while I have since confirmed 9K on 10m, it was a nice card and really nice solidarity statement with the victims of 9/11 and the US. It did take 11 years to get but I'm happy to add it to my QSL collection. Thanks to the Kuwait Amateur Radio Society.
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NU1O
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Posts: 2605




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« Reply #28 on: August 24, 2012, 03:12:37 PM »

How long to wait for a QSL?

I just received my QSL for a 10m QSO with 9K2USA from Sept. 17, 2001.

And while I have since confirmed 9K on 10m, it was a nice card and really nice solidarity statement with the victims of 9/11 and the US. It did take 11 years to get but I'm happy to add it to my QSL collection. Thanks to the Kuwait Amateur Radio Society.

When did send them your request, and was it direct or via the buro?  I have a Kuwaiti card from when the US kicked Sadam out back in 1990 or '91, but it was from an American ham. It's a very nice card showing an action scene with helicopters, tanks, soldiers. etc. It really sticks out. 

I recently sent out QSLs for QSOs going back between 10 and 21 years. I sent about a dozen out and received all back. I had help tracking addresses from guys in this forum and a woman in Poland who helped me track down an address for an operator of HF0POL. Some of these QSL were for Agalega, Juan Fernandez, Johnston and Macquarie I. I consider the 100% response rate rather remarkable  since I have about a 5% no response rate for just ordinary direct cards.  You also have to worry about silent keys when you go back 20 years. All the guys may no longer be active hams but they did take the time to send a QSL. I do know many hams take great pride in always keeping their logs "open".

I have received buro cards many years after the QSO but I can no longer recall the one that took the longest.  I know it was at least 5 years.

73,

Chris/NU1O
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NU4B
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« Reply #29 on: August 24, 2012, 04:29:19 PM »

How long to wait for a QSL?

I just received my QSL for a 10m QSO with 9K2USA from Sept. 17, 2001.

And while I have since confirmed 9K on 10m, it was a nice card and really nice solidarity statement with the victims of 9/11 and the US. It did take 11 years to get but I'm happy to add it to my QSL collection. Thanks to the Kuwait Amateur Radio Society.

When did send them your request, and was it direct or via the buro?  I have a Kuwaiti card from when the US kicked Sadam out back in 1990 or '91, but it was from an American ham. It's a very nice card showing an action scene with helicopters, tanks, soldiers. etc. It really sticks out. 

I recently sent out QSLs for QSOs going back between 10 and 21 years. I sent about a dozen out and received all back. I had help tracking addresses from guys in this forum and a woman in Poland who helped me track down an address for an operator of HF0POL. Some of these QSL were for Agalega, Juan Fernandez, Johnston and Macquarie I. I consider the 100% response rate rather remarkable  since I have about a 5% no response rate for just ordinary direct cards.  You also have to worry about silent keys when you go back 20 years. All the guys may no longer be active hams but they did take the time to send a QSL. I do know many hams take great pride in always keeping their logs "open".

I have received buro cards many years after the QSO but I can no longer recall the one that took the longest.  I know it was at least 5 years.

73,

Chris/NU1O

I sent it direct and it came direct, but not in the SAE I sent them. It is a bigger card than normal. I guess my card got stuck in a corner somewhere for a few years.
9K2USA was a call used by the Kuwait Amateur Radio Society right after 9/11. I couldn't tell the post date so I'm not sure when it was mailed although it really doesn't look old - it looks like it was recently mailed.
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