[POLL] 🇵🇾 How acceptable is bypassing the postal system?


It occurred to me when I had the head on the pillow yesterday, when I was planning to go to Iguaçu Falls/Paraguay:

They say Paraguayan postal system is unreliable (and expensive, by the way)

If I go to Ciudad del Este, buy postcards, stamps and have them postmarked at the local post office, but instead of dispatching them there, crossing the Friendship Bridge and bringing them with me to Brazil, putting them into an envelope and sending them from here.

Would you think this is valid or it is cheating?

I am curious to hear your thoughts.



Sounds reasonable to me!

But would they postmark them at a Paraguayan post office without putting them in the mail? You may just need to post them from Brazil - much simpler - and let your recipient know the card is from your recent visit to Paraguay.


If there’s a postmark and a stamp from origin I think people will be happy because it’s a pretty rare country! For me it’s valid.


I’m sure most people wouldn’t complain, but it sounds like more trouble and expense on your part. I’ve sent cards from some “iffy” places and they’ve always arrived, sometimes months later, but eventually.


In Paraguay, everything can be dealt :sweat_smile:

Like Argentina (also near, but the borders are unfortunately closed atm), the price to send a postcard is among the most expensive of the world (around 3 USD).

A second ethical question for you:
How reasonable would be doing the process I mentioned with stamps of lesser value?

I am curious to know.

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Your approach is the only possible way for some extremely rare countries. I think Paraguay will work the normal way also, but it’s not cheating due to the cancellation.

Paraguay is definitely rare enough to make these postcards attractive!


Regarding stamps with lower value: I think it depends. If a person just want to have a written and stamped postcard from this country - it will be fine. For some collectors it could be more difficult, because it’s a philatelic item but not an authentic. But that’s a long discussion, because overpaying is accepted mostly…

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I think it would be great
I would be happy even with a stamp of a lesser value

I think it would be incredible nice of you to go out of your way like

I think most people would be happy


is there a visitor center at the place you’re visiting? usually these visitor centers have a rubber stamp to use. just buy some low value stamps from the local post office and affix one on the postcard and use the visitor center rubber stamp to cancel the stamp. then send it from home inside an envelope. it would prove you had visit the place and the receiver should be happy.
good luck with your trip, as we are just starting to open up here in new mexico.


I think you are doing what is best economically for you. I would do the same to stay in the post crossing group. We welcome you !

I don’t think anyone wants you to spend frivolously Frugality is the name of the game for me. I always ask non-stateside folks if they want more postcards since the price of one is same for price of 4 or 5 of them in envelope.

I would give full disclosure if it makes you fell better! We should be a welcoming folks no matter what the circumstances are. :blush:


It is an excellent idea and friends would receive cards a lot faster!
I did that for the Galapagos. :earth_americas:


Sounds like a good compromise & I think it’s fine for most folks that you’d use stamps of lesser value. After all, you are making a special effort to get them a rare card!


Please, no rubber stamps! Please. It would be cheating. But the lower value stamps cancelled locally in P would be OK for me as a collector. Sending them afterwards in envelopes from your home country is a good idea.


I think that should be fine.
I tried to send cards from the Don Sao island (Laos) Golden Triangle and it had not arrived even after 5 yrs later. So the next time I went, I just asked for the cancellation stamps from the post office and brought the cards back to Thailand to send.


Ok, I’ve actually been to Ciudad del Este when I went to Iguazu and boy do I have some tips for you! :paraguay:

First, there are few postcards in Ciudad del Este. Like, I was there for a day and I couldn’t find anything. Lots of postcards in Foz (go to the small feria on R. Eng. Rebouças, 770-908 - Centro, next to the post office), but nothing in Paraguay. If you end up wanting a “paraguayan” postcard, I’d suggest getting some printed that are specific to Paraguay before you leave.

As for the Paraguayan postal system, it’s actually not that bad. It’s expensive by Brazilian standards, but by USA standards, it’s not too much more (like $2.00 USD per postcard). Also, the paraguayan postcards I sent actually got to their destinations before the Brazilian ones I sent from across the border.

All of this was pre-pandemic, so I don’t know if the Paraguayan postal system is still open and working. But I’d give it a solid shot.

But to answer your question, it is totally fine to get a postcard stamped and postmarked in one country and then mail it from another. It’s actually a common tactic used by Mexican postcrossers, as the postal system there can be really slow. Just make sure that they are stamped and postmarked from the same country.

Sorry for the rant. I hope this helps! :slight_smile:

PS. Paraguayan post offices only accept Guaranis in cash, so be prepared!


Great tips!


Great idea to stamp postcards with lower value stamps and send them in an envelope! This way you can exchange more cards in one envelope. I understand this perfectly well, it costs 3.10 euros to send a postcard from Italy to half of the countries, which is very expensive! I would be happy to receive an envelope with postcards from different countries with the original stamp in one envelope! Do as you like, many people will be happy to receive that postcard and me too ! I wish you a wonderful time ! :raising_hand_woman::four_leaf_clover::four_leaf_clover::four_leaf_clover:

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Maybe check the postal monitor as well as different countries have restrictions on where post can be sent at the moment… Personally, I’ve not yet received any mail from either Paraguay or Brazil yet, so would be happy with either but both countries currently have mail to UK suspended…

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I think, even if the stamp is of the smallest denomination of the original (= Paraguay, in this case) country and the postmark is from there too, everybody should be super-happy (I would be, in case you’d like to send me one of those cards too! Haha! :smiley: :wink: ) and should not consider it cheating.

Even in Austria you can have your mail postmarked and still take it with you. I think they are probably happy, if they get the money and have to do hardly anything for it (not deliver it themselves!)! :wink:

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I second this! I hunted incessantly for Paraguayan postcards in Ciudad del Este, Encarnación and Asunción, but couldn’t find any anywhere :sob: :broken_heart: