Maximize your QSL return

Postal systems will always have a few letters that get lost for many reasons, incorrect address, badly written addresses, incorrect format, machines damaging letters, incorrect delivery, although mail theft now is so low that it hasn’t even figured in my losses for many years.
Working with the Royal Mail gave me an insight to why mail goes missing, I realized that there are many ways that we can minimize losses of QSL mailings dramatically by understanding how it all works. 

Letters are no longer hand sorted, well very few are anyway. Letters are machine read and machine sorted. So it is critical that you follow these guidelines. So, let’s be clear!

We have designed our Bespoke OQRS with all this in mind to get the QSL to YOU safely. Learning from mail that has been returned especially from the USA where the sorting machines are often not able to sort mail that is not formatted correctly.
As automation increases globally to ever faster and better AI, the more formatting will change in time.

  • Envelopes should always have the recipients address in the lower left of the envelope.
  • Addresses should be printed (not handwritten) using Arial 12 point as the preference.
  • Return address in small print on top left of envelope.
  • Left align the text (no centered or ‘stepped’ lines).
  • Stamp or mailing imprint top right of envelope. 
  • Always use the full address including the full digits of Zip Code and your country name. 
  • Addresses should be written in the format that the machines recognize. There is a very good help page on Royal Mail website for this purpose.  These formats take into consideration how mail is machine read in the destination country.
  • Use standard C6 envelopes 80 – 100 gsm. No other size or shape.
  • Avoid copying PayPal addresses which are often in local language and type that can’t be read by sorting machines.
  • Every postal authority will have its recommendations such as here at USPS. My specific instructions above are for the sending of QSL cards in envelopes from wherever you are posting from in the World. 
Here at the United Radio QSL Bureau we have very few letters that go missing due to our work in QSL management over the years. If for whatever reason your letter from us does not arrive let us know as soon as possible. But please be polite!

About author View all posts

Tim Beaumont