QSL’ing is sort of its own Amatuer Radio sub-topic and there are definitely things that work well and some that don’t. DXLab is a good tool for QSL-ing. Anita and I use it to QSL over 10 callsigns including AB1OC, AB1QB, N1FD, K2K, FO/AB1OC, FO/AB1QB and the mobile and portable variations of these callsigns. I think that you are on the right track with the idea of using a program like DXLab to print your cards. The way we do this is we get photo cards made with blank backs and we use DXLab to print the QSL information. I did an article on this topic awhile back. You can check it out here.
How you choose to QSL and the approach you take to direct QSL requests will determine how successful you are at securing confirmations. Here are the QSL stats for my callsign, AB1OC:
- Total QSOs to date – 52,000+
- Total Direct QSLs sent – 13,000+
- %QSOs Confirmed via LoTW – 41%
- %QSOs Confirmed via Direct Cards – 74%
The QSL Bureau route is a slow process but it does work reasonably well for the stations which participate and it is inexpensive compared to the direct SAE (Self address envelope)/green stamp route. Best case, the Bureau route takes a year but this can easily extend to 2 years or more.
You will find that many DX contacts will require you to go the direct SAE/green stamp route to obtain a card. The method outlined in the article here will produce the best results in the face of growing problems with international postal theft. Using ClubLog’s OQRS services is a great alternative for stations which make this service available. ClubLog OQRS speeds up the process significantly and eliminates the problems with postal theft when green stamps are used. We provide ClubLog OQRS for our club’s N1FD callsign.
It is also customary to provide an SASE (Self Addressed Stamped Envelope) when confirming most USA contacts.
We use UX5UO to print our blank-bank photo cards including the club’s QSL cards. He does a great job and a reasonable cost.
I hope that this information helps you.