Expired Postcards

This is my recent horror story of expired postcards. I currently have 18 expired cards, but look at what’s been/ will continue to happen this week, next week:

Fortunately, every postcrosser in the UK has a similar problem. Since the Royal Mail cyber incident in early January, UK-Russia mail has stopped (though not officially. RM insists that there is just a slight delay.).


I guess a card to Spain will expire, the user has very irregular registration patterns (for months nothing and than a whole bunch of cards … sometimes for 6 months nothing). It’s a bit sad because was one of these profiles were I did write a lot on the card because it kind of matched and chose a stamp I haven’t many of anymore because she might like it.
And a card to Finland from the same batch is going towards expiring too, as that user has quite normal travel times from Germany it might really be lost.
Others with currently more than 40 days are China and Taiwan. China is to be expected but Taiwan is a bit sad. I wrote it on lunar new year and put my 2nd last rabbit stamp on it and chose a rabbit card I liked myself. But maybe it’ll still arrive.
Otherwise sad, but that’s the game …


Here are mine …

I re-sent to Ukraine yesterday as they are a very active member, so I think the original card is likely lost.

China … maybe, just maybe, I’ll re-send in an envelope with a Chinese language address later this year and hope for the best? But, not anytime soon …

The Danish one I keep going back-and-forth on, always leaning towards no. Their last activity was sending a couple of cards back in November, triggered my getting this address when those arrived. Are they a ghostcrosser at this point? Or, if a replacement card arrived unexpectedly would they say “Wow!” and register it?

Yes, I find it sad too, if I chose a unique card and then it expires. Lost one of those (it was a limited edition of a book illustrator) more than 365 days ago to India. It’s one of my sadest losses.
(So far 6 cards are due for more than a year, 2 more expired.)

But on the other hand I received a card from France these days, that needed more than 60 days. Well, in that distance it would be faster walking …

So, there’s always a little chance remaining.

I had the same experience with France last autumn: two cards sent on the same day (or a day or two apart) arrived to me at the same time and needed 2 months for that. But from Austria it even needed an additional month, while I received from China and the USA for 50 and 40 days accordingly.

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How many expired cards do you need until postcrossing suspends your account?


I would like to know this also


This depends on many factors - one of them is how many cards you have sent already (the more you have sent, the more you can have as expired at a given time) but there are others. It is not a fixed number.


It also depends on how many postcards to one certain country are expired (so at the first look it seems that the user maybe does not send postcards to A-land due to whatever personal reasons).

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My expectation should be based on the median of travel time. Take 2 countries with stable postal systems for example: it usually takes a card 33 days to arrive in Germany and 36 days to the USA. In my memory that seemed to be faster in 2021, so after a turbulent 2022, I should be more patient…My 2 cards traveling to US and DE have been traveling for 37 days and I am looking forward to the good news.:crossed_fingers:t2:

Checked my stats: 23/76 sent cards are expired before arriving. Since the postal system here is always not a fast one, I even hardly consider expiration as a problem…“After all it arrived, didn’t it?” Though I still hope they can arrive sooner.

Edit: One of my sent cards to Poland arrived after traveling for 161days…Surprise!!:partying_face:

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Hello, for some reason, postcards in Russia are delivered longer than, for example, six months ago! Recently, the parcel has been delivered faster than the card. It is unclear what this is related to. But it’s very sad.

Usually, I don’t ask. But sometimes I decide to resend postcard. For example, it is VERY rare that postcard to Germany or Holland is lost. So, if user don’t register it in 60-90 days, I am sure it will never arrive, and sometimes I decide to resend it. However, I never resend to China or USA, because travel-time is TOO long, and chance for getting lost (again) TOO high.

I remember long ago getting two postcards lost with destination Ukraine-Ukraine (After a while I asked the person whether they received my postcard and just resent it). Well, I don’t know, what were the chances the second card would also get lost? It sure was a mystery. Since then I never resent cards.:smiling_face_with_tear:

Cards being sent to Germany never used to get lost for me either, but now in the past five months, I’ve had several go missing (along with a couple others to different countries). I think it’s the USPS here in the city where I live. I moved here a year ago, and have had many issues with outgoing mail. It makes me sad. My former city was not like that at all; it was reliable.

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I’ve posted earlier in this thread, but wanted to add a couple more thoughts. One is that I find it both heart warming and heart breaking how invested postcrossers are in the cards that they send. One of the things this hobby tends to teach you, whether you want to learn it or not, is how to be patient, and how to let things go.

But really, the primary reason I’ve come back is to illustrate what I said earlier - once you release the card, you really have no idea what may happen to it. I’d like to share with you the story of the mail I received yesterday. Outside of the normal amount of junk mail, there were two postcards. One was a direct swap of a lovely meetup card featuring the Little Prince, from France. Seemania and I arranged to do a few swaps at the end of February, and she sent this card on 03 MAR 2023, so it arrived in 12 days, pretty good timing from France I thought. But there was also a second card.

The second card was a regular postcrossing card, it was sent from Austria by E - on 04 MAR 2023, again, pretty good transit time. But here’s the rub: this card is not addressed to me. It is addressed to someone else, another person who lives in the United States. They live in another state, 699 miles away from me. The USPS delivered this card to the wrong address, but by sheer chance, the address they delivered it to was mine, another postcrosser! To be clear, this was not delivered to my neighbor by mistake, or to an address that is very similar. It was delivered to a person with a completely different name and address and zip code than the intended recipient.

I, of course, have contacted postcrossing to let them know and have asked them contact both the sender and the recipient. I will forward the card in an envelope in tomorrow’s post (the stamps are already cancelled, and I’d like to avoid further confusion with the USPS) to the intended recipient.

Here’s my take away:

1 - Don’t give up hope, you never know what tortured bizarre path your card is taking to arrive where it is supposed to go.
2 - Just let go. It will get there. Or it won’t. You really have no control once it has left your hands. Focus on the next card going out and celebrate the small miracles of the cards that do arrive!


My issue regarding expired cards has to do with hearing about people getting their accounts suspended because they have more than a couple of them.

That is precisely my fear. I have 16 slots, 14 travelling, and 8 expired postcards. This and the very long travel times are making me fear a suspension, and also make me wonder if it’s really worth it to continue Postcrossing.


I have had this happen to me. I received a postcrossing postcard for another user in another state. I mailed her the card in an envelope. Sadly, I never heard back from her- not even an email to thank me for sending it. Once I received a postcard like this too- it had been sent to another member and she mailed it to me in an envelope. I messaged her to thank her and sent her a postcard as thanks. I hope that first user at least registered the card that I sent her.

Another time I ordered address labels from a company and in with my order was someone else’s. I sent their labels to them, but also did not receive a thank you. :joy_cat::joy_cat: It’s kind of sad, really.


I have 45 travelling and 19 expired as of this morning. The idea of getting suspended has never occurred to me. I don’t usually look at how many I have expired, except when I suddenly seem to have an unexpected open slot.

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Once an account is suspended, will it automatically return to normal if another card from their traveling card get registered?

I sent a few cards to Russia just before Post Indonesia closed the airmail service there, and now they are all expired. :cry: I just hope the cards doesn’t get forgotten and will continue the journey after the service is reopened. My other expired cards are sadly to members that never login again for months after I got their addresses…

And now Pos Indonesia is going very slow since October last year (for me). I’m afraid all of my travelling cards will expires by the end of next month and my account would get suspended.