Newbie from the UK looking for some advice?

Hello All

I’m a newbie to Postcrossing, a friend told me about this. Since then I have told two other people and both have also signed up and started to send.

My question is - When sending a standard postcard international how much does it cost?

The lady at the post office didn’t know the answer… I have seen something about its £1.70 , by the way I’m in the UK…

Please help as I am dying to send my first one…

According to Prices of stamps for postcards in all countries/territories (wiki) the prices from UK are as following:

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Thank you Norway_girl …

You’re welcome @MissBusyBee! I hope you’ll enjoy Postcrossing!

If you use “International Standard”, you must mark the card “by AIR MAIL” or put on the Royal Mail sticker. If you use “International Economy” no marking is required (and “by AIR MAIL” is not allowed).

You can either buy stamps which cost £1.70, or you can use two first class stamps (because they’re 85p each so they add together to make £1.70). I’ve got lots of pretty first class stamps so I like to use them.

@MissBusyBee .
Hi, Yes its £1.70 - it went up on 01 Jan. As another post said, 2 first class stamps means you can just drop the card in a letter box. Postage stamps seem a bit cheaper if you buy in bulk off the Royal Mail website (suggest you do the maths, I may be mistaken). They arrive promptly and its easy to get the fun new issues, if you like them. My PO rarely has this. Some folks may recommend other websites but I’ve never been sure how legal they are.

I’m fairly sure that the Royal Mail website just sells stamps at face value.

I have seen discounted stamps on a famous auction site, but if you do buy them there make sure they are genuinely unused and not merely “unfranked” which means they’ve been through the postal system before (and therefore shouldn’t be reused). If they’re described as unfranked, gum-free or for philatelic interest only, give them a swerve.

For a wider selection of discounted and valid postage I’ve used Philatelink in the past. They sell mint stamps that previously formed a part of people’s stamp collections. They’ve never been used and so remain valid, however, their stock on everything is low because of a combination of increased demand for postage and the drying up of their usual routes of supply such as stamp fairs.

With the new stamp rates I use two first class stamps (£1.70) plus an airmail sticker for any cards going to Europe, and I use two second class stamps plus 13p of make-up stamps (£1.45) for postcards going elsewhere.

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What, the person at the post office didn’t know?

Keep an eye on https://www.royalmail.com/prices2021 Royal Mail need to give 28? days notice of any price rises and I guess they’ll post the details (or link) there.

Currently, the only good thing about the price rise at the start of this year was that 2 x 1st class equals that first rate of airmail, and means that there are so many lovely combinations of the nice 1st class stamps.

I would add, if you’ve got real life friends also doing Postcrossing, perhaps order stamps from Royal Mail online (be careful, you don’t want the presentation packs and that if you want to use for postage), and order enough for the free p&p. Themes available include Star Trek, Star Wars, Harry Potter, Marvel…

Or try for an order at Philatelink…

ebay is well, caution definitely advised… So many new-looking stamps offered there are not valid for postage

The lady at our post office knew all about it. If you try this cheaper option, it won’t go by airmail, and will likely take 4-6 weeks to arrive.

Interesting. I always send my non-European postcards by International Economy and haven’t noticed a significant delay versus my European cards sent International Standard. Pandemic notwithstanding I’m not sure they even send mail by sea any more except as a contingency.

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Well, when I said she knew all about it, she was reading from an official leaflet.

What’s interesting to me in this thread, is that I can use two first class stamps to make up the (outrageous) £1.70 cost, now, of sending a postcard. They’re pricing me out of the market!

BTW, Royal Mail only sells stamps at face value, there’s no saving to be had there, only the convenience of having them through the post.

I’ve done an experiment with ‘International Economy’ I’ve marked some postcards with Airmail sticker/stamp and have had postcards to places like Japan and the US be recieved in under 14 days and others such as Hong Kong and Australia take 90 days.

Even without the Airmail Sticker/Stamp travel times can vary between 14 & 100 days.

All depends on who is sorting the mail.
I sometimes think ‘International Economy’ is like RM’s discreet postcard rate.

I sometimes buy Mint stamps off EBAY. I usually look for Mint Presentation packs and stamp books, had some real bargains.
Managed to obtain some special themed ‘E’ stamps from some presentation packs. These are effectively the discontinued (still valid) NVI Europe stamps, paid roughly £0.65 for a £1.70 stamp.


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I have another question about the ‘E’ stamps as I sometimes send through Britain.
If I send a card to USA with an ‘E’ stamp how much more stamps do I need to put on the card when it is outside of Europe ?

Interesting question, I too would like to know the answer too

As the ‘E’ stamp is effectively the letter rate to Europe upto 100g, which is effectively the same rate as a 10g-20g letter/postcard to World Zones 1-3?

Would the sorting machines have some sort of fit, if they come across ‘E’ NVI with a outside Europe address?

If you wanted to try it, I would suggest writing the postage price on the opposite side to the where the stamp is placed.

I’ve tried to research the ‘E’ NVI stamp, I think they where phased out in mid 2000s when RM went back to putting prices on International stamps as the rates became universal for the world zones up to a certain weight.
They are still valid and I have used the above stamps on postcards to France and Germany.

I have in the past year used E stamps on postcards to all destinations, and they have all arrived. I only have a couple of them left now but still plan to use them for the mail categories wherever the price says £1.70 in the list @maddymail included above.

I had a card take four months to get here from South Africa. Pretty sure that came by canoe!