I'd take any of those other slant options over the plug of lyophilized yeast in a piece of glass tube melted at both ends that same labs use to send samples.
The only culture collection that I know of that ships brewing cultures in lyophilized form is the NCYC. I actually like receiving cultures in lyophilized form. Granted, a lyophilized culture needs to be rehydrated, started, and plated before use, but the use of a lyophilized culture is less time sensitive than a slant. The only other culture that I have ordered from the NCYC was a lyophilized culture. However, I ordered that culture before 911. Hefebank Weihenstephan will ship a culture on sterile cotton. The sterile cotton is dropped into media upon receipt. The media still has to be plated for singles if one wants to transfer the culture to slant.
It may be a common technique for public/quasi-public collections. ARS/NRRL does it too.