Pictorial postmarks in Taiwan

I often see special postmarks in cards from Asia featuring local landmarks, and I know that Taiwan also has some, like the one below…

image

But how can I find out more about them? :thinking: Are they in specific post offices only, or just available for a certain amount of time? Can I just go to a post office counter and ask for them?

Any tips would be appreciated!

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I usually request these according to their official website, but it is only in Traditional Chinese.

  • the red kind are permanent unless they decide to discontinue it.
    中華郵政全球資訊網-集郵業務 - 全國風景郵戳一覽表 when you request it, these postmarks don’t cancel stamps, but you need to include return postage on the card for them to cancel with regular postmarks.

  • the black kind are time sensitive. 中華郵政全球資訊網-集郵業務 - 臨時郵局戳圖 So I need to calculate time if I want to send in for postmarking. The black kind can be used to cancel stamps. If the post office has those red postmarks, I can get 2 birds in 1 stone. When I visited Taiwan in 2018, the postal worker told me one stamp (for 1 regular or black pictorial postmark) can come with an additional 2 red stamps.

either types, you can send mail request (if in time) or go in person.

an example from my collection: the post office has 6 red postmarks, I can actually get all 6 red postmarks with 3 stamps, but just felt it look better with 4 stamps in that format.

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Thank you for explaining, Pei! This is amazing!

So, I understand that although the red ones are not to be put on stamps, they can only be used if there are stamps on the card — and the stamps themselves will be postmarked with black postmarks that have a date.

The black pictorial cancellation marks seem more rare… all the ones on the website are available for just one day? I think I probably won’t be able to find some in a location where I am in the time I’m there. But it’s ok — if I can have the other ones, I think it’s already really special! :heart_eyes:

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correct about the red ones.

as for the black ones, they release the images pretty early on so people can make plans to mail in (I am sending from US and most still makes it in time) or visit in person. I hear they actually last 10 days through mail request, but not sure. but it does take more effort to get it in person if the post office is not at a close location.

One of my craziest stories. When I was in Taiwan in 2018 I rode a bus for 4 hours just to visit a post office offering dragon boat festival postmark available for only one day, but the bus got into an accident! The huge bus got hit by a small car backing up for some reason, and the bus was the one that got damaged! Everyone was fine, just the front window. It got a huge crack diagonally, the bus driver had to call in for a replacement bus, and because it wasn’t a local bus route, it took forever. I finally made it to the post office after a 2 hour delay, so the postmark is extremely special to me.

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Wow… what an adventure for getting that special cancellation mark! :sweat_smile: I’m glad that no one got hurt. And the matching stamp with the zongzi… so cute! :heart_eyes:

This is a little off-topic, but can I ask if you have a favorite place to get stamps in Taipei or Kaohsiung? Is there a post office with a special philatelic counter, or does any post office have the same selection available?

Sorry for so many questions!

No problem, have fun when you visit :laughing: I am not Taiwanese, so it was truly an adventure when I visit Taiwan and do the odd thing of collecting postmarks :sweat_smile: When I was getting the postmarks most people there were retired, laid back grandpas, they were really surprised by my obsession with stamps and postmarks.

I got most of my stamps at the Beimen Post Office (臺北北門郵局) in Taipei. I think it is their biggest post office there, and they also got a bunch of the red postmarks (6 or 8 from what I can remember) Just tell them you want to buy stamps. I remember there was a special stamp counter where I bought Lunar Year and other commemorative stamps (at face value) but either way, they sell stamps.

most post offices sell stamps, when I run out of stamps for postmarking, I just go into a random post office for stamps, the difference is mainly in variety. I actually got the zongzi stamp where I got the postmark, I think it was the first day postmark that’s why it was matching. overall it wasn’t a problem for me to buy stamps in Taiwan…Hong Kong was another story :joy:

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I stayed in Taiwan for 6 months and was able to get six pictorial postmarks from Kaohsiung, Changhua, Taichung, and Taipei.






The black ones are only available at a certain time and place and it’s usually just for a day. It’s not always at a post office, by the way. I got the ones from Changhua and Kaohsiung at anniversary/grand meeting events held at restaurants lol. It was so awkward because I felt like I was intruding on their event :sweat_smile:

Something to note is that when you already have an address written on the card you’re cancelling, they will expect you to send the card out right then and there. So if you want to get postmarks in advance and send them out at a later time, just stick a 1 TWD stamp and nothing else

I think most post offices sell commemorative stamps but I got some of mine at the postal museum in Taipei. There’s a postal museum in Kaohsiung as well. You can likewise order older stamps through their website.

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Most of the bigger post offices have several permanent ones altogether!
I’ve been to the Taipei main office for those pictorial postmarks last month, but didn’t get my postcards stamped, I was told that the staff in charge of the stamps get off work one to two hours earlier than others :cry:

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Thank you everyone for your tips, and for sharing your experiences! I shall remember to keep an eye on the website for cool new postmarks… and also remember not to go to the post office too late in the day :sweat_smile: