DX University™

  A Guide for DXers and DXpeditioners

Expectations: What do YOU expect from a DXpedition?

The WeeklyDX™ Helpful Hints No. 31 from the DX University™*

One of the things that always comes up before, during and after a DXpedition is how to deal with the expectations of DXers. It’s probably safe to say that most DXpeditioners strive to please. That is, they wish to satisfy the audience to the greatest degree possible. In doing this, however, to what extent should DXpedition organizers cater to “their audience?”

Prior to the beginning of a DXpedition – during the planning – the team members will study the need for their destination in the world of DXers. Who needs what? Of course, those in Europe have a greater need for entities in the Pacific and less need in Africa and the Indian Ocean. DXers in Asia need the Caribbean and South American, and North American DXers most need the Indian Ocean and South Asia. These needs are all different. Given the geography of the Earth, it all makes sense. Time and time again, the various “Most Wanted Lists” bear this out.

The DXpedition planning usually revolves primarily around these needs. Antennas systems are designed for all of this geography, allowing it all to fit into the situation that will exist. Is high power permitted? Will equipment loans and/or donations be required? Forthcoming?

Planning also involves the operators. Who will go? Who will be the leaders?  Who has the necessary funds? Who has the required time? Who has the skills necessary for the required task, and how will we handle those participants with less-than-the-requisite skills?

Perhaps the most important planning item however, is a consideration of what DXers expect? Do – or even should – DXers expect more then just working a DXCC entity on some particular band or mode?

If so, what do the planners need to do, and how do they plan for meeting the expectations of DXers? Certainly, DXers wish contacts on their needed bands. There are always lots of opinions expressed after an expedition, Usually, if you needed some particular band and mode, your response is positive – particularly if you are not at the “end of the Earth” from the DXpedition. If you are far from the location, and you weren’t successful, you will usually have “some suggestions” for the DXpeditioners.

Are there other expectations held by DXers? In addition to being on the right band at the right time, are there aspects of the operation that DXers wish DX operators would emphasize? Should their CW be faster? Slower? Should their operators listen more in certain areas of the bands?  Should all expeditions utilize real-time, on-line logs? Club Log? There are many things that DXers might expect.

To help meet expectations, it would be useful for DXpeditioners to publicize what they plan to do and ask for feedback from DXers prior to any major expedition. Team leaders could then decide what they need to do and then tell the World about their objectives. This process might help them to meet real expectations. To some extent, this is a CYA maneuver. In any event, this creates a real target at which to aim. If the goals are realistic and they are met, there can be little complaint.

What are YOUR expectations? Write to n7ng@arrl.net

*The DX University™ is a daylong learning session for newcomers and old-timers wishing to hone their DXing skills. These weekly articles published in the WeeklyDX™ are archived in the pages of The DX University, www.dxuniversity.com