Contest is a one of the reason ham radio stays on air. Chasing for contacts and collecting points to win. I dont participates on contest as im not good on this.
There are so many contest. There will be many type of categories. High power, low power, single operator or multioperator.
Here in Malaysia we have many hams participated on contesting. This is good. We can learn something from this activity.
Different contest will have different rules. Rules will be listed on contest's official website.
Some ham will take a holiday just to be a participant. Some will gather up and build a multioperator team. They will be preparing for the contest and also checking their equipment so there will no problem later.
A beam antenna always a good choice. One transceiver is enough but more tranceivers are better.
When working on multioperator, a good bandpass filter can help. For example, A operator operates 40 meters and B operator operates on 15 meters. Without external bandpass filter there will be a QRM among them. Brand like Dunestar is famous.
I do respect people who joined contest on QRP category. Its a challenge for them to make contact with low power. Most people will operate CW mode on low power while others operate SSB too.
Sometime i listened to contest. When contesting begun, i heard many rare callsigns. So i think, it is good to join a contest if you are searching for new DXCC.
A great contester have a great patient. It is not easy when the band condition is bad and also when fighting with high power stations.
If the contest runs for 48 hours, some will put a drink and food near to their shack. If they are hungry, they just grab the food and eat without leaving the shack. This is a good idea. For multioperator, there will be no problem for them.
There is a Malaysian ham who made a contest to local ham just to invite more people to go on HF. I like this idea. The more the merrier. Some will learn new things, and some will improve their skills.
For me, contest is not about who will win or who will lose. But it is the way how hams stay on air.
Good luck to all contesters. Keep the spirit live.