Have you hand-written the Chinese addresses and had them arrive?

Sometimes, when I get Chinese Postcrossing friends for my official cards, I will print the Chinese address out, cut that out and glue it onto the postcard.
Sometimes I write in English knowing it may take quite a while to arrive.

Today, the profile I pulled up asked me (very nicely - not as a demand) to please hand-write the Chinese address if I didn’t mind, as she said that was the fastest way to send a card. I certainly don’t mind trying, but the reason I haven’t before is I have heard that the slightest little mistake could send my card to the completely wrong address.

Chinese PC-ers… is that true? Is the written stroke, angle, length, etc, so very “touchy” that I could easily mis-address it? Or will it just look sloppy or like a child wrote it, but still be decipherable?

US folks (who don’t know Chinese)… have you done this? Have you carefully copied out the address by hand and had it successfully delivered?

I did do it, by the way. It took me about 15 minutes to write it, and it looked like a pretty good match. Fingers crossed. For the record, I have had cards sent to China using the first two methods I mentioned, that were expired and/or deleted, so I figured it couldn’t hurt to give it “the old college try!”


When I went to the Atlanta, Georgia meetup Elliott wrote all of their addresses to Asian countries by hand. They said they arrive fine, but their handwriting was also so good (neat and crisp) that I wouldn’t imagine most people would know that wasn’t the language they usually write in.


Practice makes perfect.

Mandarin was my 2nd language in school for 10 years. But I never wrote in Chinese other than for school.

I started writing it again for the Chinese addresses with a correction tape on hand as I often had to use the tape to correct some improperly written characters.

Practice on paper first before writing it on the card.


Hi. I am very new here and just received a recipient in China for my first postcard. I was trying to think of a way to print out the address and affix it to a postcard. Does this just require normal paper and normal glue? I am afraid if I don’t affix it well that I might risk it getting separated in the mail processing. Thanks for any tips on this!


Hello @schatzi7 and welcome!
I think the very best way is to print an actual label, but I don’t know how to do that. (Someone else might).
I first just used regular glue (like in school) but that was a pain. Then I discovered glue dot pens (Amazon) and now I glue it on with that and then cover it all with transparent tape or just cover the edges with washi and I’ve had them make it that way.

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I don’t understand Chinese but I always try to write the address in that language. Most postcards arrived without problems and the recipients were often pleased to see my efforts.

Granted, I understand Japanese so I know how to write some similar characters, but I wouldn’t worry about misspelling a character or two. Even if one word is wrong, usually the other words or the context will help convey the message anyway. Some Chinese scrawl / cursive and calligraphy are often much harder to read and sometimes miss certain strokes, but the meaning doesn’t change much as long as the context is there.

In an address, I think it’s unlikely that your handwriting will be so wrong that the postcard is send to a different address, because there are others like region/province name and zip code that will help. I’m not Chinese so I can’t confirm, but the point is don’t be afraid to try to write in another language. :blush:



Thank you for the tips. I will go with your way and go with dot glue and the transparent tape should help me to affix it. I understand we don’t have to necessarily place our return address so I think I will substitute the english version of the recipients address and place that in the return area.

Thanks so much!


I belong to another non-postcard group that does a postcard exchange. The vast majority of people use labels on the back of their cards, I’m one of the few who handwrites everything. Any local stationary/office store will have label sheets that can feed into any regular printer, you should be able to find something similar.

Of course, handwriting the address is okay too. I live in Japan and never write the address in kanji (Chinese characters) because 1. It would take me too long and 2. I too worry about stroke order and making mistakes. But they use the Roman alphabet here in Japan so it’s rarely an issue. I’ve only sent one card to China so far, and while it was the longest send (23 days) it arrived! That said, I may try to write the address in Chinese next time, and see if that makes a difference.


I believe it really depends on where in China your card is going to

If you’re sending to the big cities, think Beijing, Shanghai, English should be fine

However if you’re sending to smaller second, third or even fourth tier cities, writing in Chinese should speed up delivery.

To OP: yes I’ve written Chinese addresses and they have reached with no issues


I wrote addresses in Chinese, in Latin, printed them. I noticed no difference in delivery time.


I worte to my Chinese friend a letter and she asked me to write the address in chinese. I wrote the address in both chinese and english. The chinese address is took 20 mins to write properly, but it’s not look so perfect. But it received to her properly but take more time to receive like more than 60 days.

If you want to write in chinese I prefer to print the address. So they can able to understand properly. Because Chinese is more tough and more similar letters are there.


If you write Chinese address, it will be convenient for postal workers to sort, but it will have little impact on delivery time. In addition, China’s zip code can be specific to townships, so if you write the zip code, it will be very specific to the county-level postal outlets. In addition, most of China’s English addresses are in the Hanyu Pinyin alphabet, so postal delivery personnel will quickly spell out the corresponding Chinese characters and deliver.


I have received postcards from the United States, and whether they are written or not Chinese most of the delivery time is about 20 days. Delivery times also depend on the proximity of the city to the mail entry centers in coastal areas


I write the chinese address by hand and just a week ago I got a hurray message which stated to me, that my handwriting was very well :slightly_smiling_face:


I use package sealing tape for that.

However, one Chinese member only provided a Western-style address, nothing Chinese, which recently arrived quickly.



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Well, no.
I studied Japanese at the uni.
The angle, the length actually do not matter.

If you miss / misspell some tiny element of the character, it will not affect the meaning.

If you miss some large stroke, it can lead to some misunderstanding, BUT in 99% the Chinese/Japanese native speakers will understand the text without any problems


I do handwrite Chinese addresses when I get them. I enlarge the characters and then copy them. I guess it must look like a child learning how to write to a native Chinese but so far my cards have arrived and every now and them I have received compliments for writing in Chinese.

It takes me quite some time to handwrite Chinese addresses but well - this is what I love about this hobby. You learn so many new things


There are quite a few useful hints on writing Chinese addresses here:

and here:


In China for postcards from overseas, there is a translation department to interpret the address into the correct one in Chinese and write it on card. So the postman can deliver it.
So the zip code is the most important. The zip code determines which city the postcard will be send to. Then the local translation department will recognize the address since they are familiar with the local road name:)