So I made the US Aquathlon National team. In my recap I said I was proud to make the team but hardly blown away with my performance. In fact, with a very generous selection system, it seemed if you had modest talent you would make the team. Discussing how deep the team went with someone who had made two previous national teams they said "Well, the World Championship is in Denmark. They now half the people who qualify aren't going to make the trip. They just want to collect fees." I wasn't exactly sure what he meant.
Lo and behold I get an email today congratulating me on making the team. In order to hold my spot, I have two weeks to pay $50 to USA Triathlon. THEN, I can register for the race. Note, the $50 not only doesn't go toward the registration but I don't even know how much the registration is until I pay the $50. I could pay the money, see the registration is $200, realize that in a sprint type race that this world championship is that I will be noncompetitive and with the cost of travel and everything else, just say screw it. But then I am out the original $50 because, wait for it, it is nonrefundable.
I truly believe that most people don't mind paying for things, even if it is a little more than they might expect, if they feel like it isn't an underhanded nickel and dime job. (I forgot to mention that it isn't just $50 as that Active.com charges a $5.12 processing fee. You know, it is 2017 and credit card stuff is so new-fangled. They are going to have to specifically train someone to figure out that infernal contraption.) If the $55.12 was just incorporated into the fee, or heck if even the $5.12 was incorporated into the $50 of profit for USAT, I am sure many wouldn't mind the expense.
So here I sit. I have two weeks to decided if I want to throw $50 away. I have emailed USAT asking for the registration price wondering if they will tell me before I register. No response yet. I suddenly recall a similar circumstance when I last attempted to, and did, qualify for the World Championship in 2009. I had to totally forgotten that this same scenario had turned me away then. Now I have to decide if it will turn me away again.
I'll keep you posted.