Pre-paid postcards with no stamps

I’m interested to know how people who like stamps feel about pre-paid postcards with no stamps on them. Not asking so much for the stamp collectors’ opinions, but those who like stamps as part of the complete package of a postcard.

Obviously, it’s a little disappointing, but is it acceptable, or does it devalue the experience too much for you?

I often add low-value or used stamps to pre-paid cards - obviously, these are not counted as postage, but I hope help to make the card feel complete. Do people like receiving cards with stamps like this?

What about a pre-paid maxicard, where the back side only has the pre-paid barcode in the stamp position, but there is a real stamp on the front?

I’ve also in the past sent cards as ‘travellers’ (another forum member introduced this idea to me). Cards sent in envelopes, with the cards written, addressed, and with a low-value or used stamp attached. so they mimic a card sent naked.

I’d love to know people’s feelings about the best way to deal with cards that don’t require stamps!


I like stamps, but they are only a part of the card. One can still delight me with card image, message or decorations. Maxicards are cool and there actually is a stamp, nevermind that it is not on the backside! Sometimes people have added used or non-valid stamps as decoration and I like that too. When a card is sent inside an envelope, many people use that as a chance to write a longer message. That is terrific! For me it is not so important if the card looks like it has been sent “naked” or not, it is more about the personal touch.



I’m almost certainly over-thinking this, but I’d hate to discover something I was regularly doing was disappointing people so I had to ask…

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I would like used stamps on prepaid cards

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I personally view pre-paid postcards as somewhat different than traditional postcards so I’m fine if there’s no stamp on this.


I don’t think they’re disappointing at all! And especially the Australian maxi cards are amazing. We should keep in mind that not everyone has the same access to stamps or access at a reasonable price. Stamps are just an extra after all. :slight_smile:


I’m not familiar with maxi cards but as I understand it they are basically just prepaid postcards from Australia. Forgive my ignorance!

But for me, part of the fun of postcrossing is the sheer variety of postcards and the diversity of what is received. Some have different themes, all have different messages, and in different countries, postage is applied differently.

If all the postcards were the same I think that would be more disappointing! For the avoidance of doubt I’d in no way be disappointed if I received a maxi card. And as stated often on this forum…your only obligation is to send a card!


I actually really enjoy seeing the variety of postage that people use, and I don’t believe I have received a prepaid card yet. As far as I know, that option isn’t available to me, so I would be quite impressed to see one!

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@PinkNoodle au contraire

(OK, there might only be two of them, and they’re not exactly of the most exciting designs, but there are prepaid cards available from the USPS).


Aha! Thank you–I completely forgot about these! :partying_face:

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I prefer postcard with stamp(s) but I don’t mind with prepaid cards since they are official product of Post Office. I prefer to receive prepaid card as it is, without additional used stamp(s) on it.


This collector’s opinion… :crazy_face:

Postcrossing is not about collecting stamps, it’s about sharing postcards with a random person in the world. If in this process we receive nice stamps, the better.

If you have a nice pre-paid card, there’s nothing preventing you from sending it. And Australia has amazing pre-paid cards! :sunglasses:

From a Philatelist point of view (not me, I’m just a basic stamps collector), adding used stamps or stamps higher than the amount you should is currupting the postage so, in my opinion, it’s worse than being a pre-paid cause a pre-paid is a philatelic item itself and in this case, the rubber stamp from the post offices will be the crown’s jewel.

A maxicard with a pre-paid postage is something I’ve only seen on australian cards (that I remember) and I think it’s the best solution for the endless question amongst stamps collectors: does the stamp on the image count as postage and can I send a maxicard with extra stamps on the front/written part?


Of course I can only speak for myself…


I appreciate it, I always do it with cards I send in envelope as to me they feel somehow naked without.


I do. No stamps are kind of sad, but even just a low-value or invalid stamp brightens the card up immensely for me. :slight_smile:

If people have to use an envelope, I have to admit I’m usually glad if they use boring stamps. :blush: Because I don’t collect stamps on their own, the stamps on an envelope are lost to me and if they’re special and pretty, that’s doubly sad. If, however, there is a used stamp attached to the card inside, that helps a lot! Or if there is space enough left on the card so that I can transfer the stamp from the envelope onto the card, that is great too. [It feels a bit like cheating to me, but then I made up the rules for my own “collection” and they pertain only to me, so why shouldn’t I be allowed to bend them. :wink: ] I don’t think a real collector would do this or that many people do it at all, but I have “saved” a number of beautiful stamps this way. :wink:

Does anyone know why the Canadian post marks their pre-paid postcard on the front? I’ve always found it weird as it doesn’t exactly enhance the picture side and the card is of course also marked as pre-paid on the back, so why do they do it? :thinking:

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Greece also has maxi with prepaid postage and i was always wondering what to do. I normally dont add any stamps (even low cost) because it might even be confusing for a post office clerk or mess their system of selection/whatever!

I understand many people like stamps but especially for maxi cards, i believe people collect them for their philatelic value as they are (even if that means no stamp).

As for Australia you have amazing prepaid ones. No stamp=more space to write!


I like stamps but I don’t really care if I get a pre-paid card. Actually I don’t even care the front. :sweat_smile: I cherish nice greetings on the back much more. And I love funny stories told by strangers. :kissing_heart: I don’t think I gave you any useful opinions. :joy: But,

I do this to those cards in envelopes too cause it does feel complete. Sometimes people ask to swap more than a card so we mail them in envelopes. Then I’ll put low-value or use stamps or stamp-shaped stickers on those cards. :grin:


I enjoy nice stamps on the cards but if it is a prepaid card, I just view the printed label thing as an unusual stamp, it doesn’t take away anything from the enjoyment of the postcard for me.

I mention I like the stamps on my profile because if someone can use something a little bit more unusual, I’ll be very happy, but if they can’t or they think a prepaid card would be a good choice to send to me, then I’ll be just as happy to receive it.


I’m a big stamp lover but for me prepaid- especially Maximum cards (I love them a lot) - are totally fine as they are. In Germany I totally have to pay the full postage as here the stamp on the front side does not count. But German Post is in many things strange.

So dont worry too much. Card is fine just like it is


I agree. The postcards I’ve received from the Canada Post come with prepaid stamps, and after receiving a few, I’ve taken a huge liking to them for this reason (plus the scenery being gorgeous, of course). The uniqueness of a card without a stamp is quite fun to me. Before reading the replies on this thread I’d have guessed there’d be a mix of preferences, but it seems like a majority of people don’t mind!

I will say, in the case of written cards in an envelope, I’d sometimes put these sort of stamp sticker imitations (not sure how to describe them properly) in the corner for those who don’t specify having a love for actual stamps since I don’t often have used stamps on me, but this scenario is rare. I think adding a low denomination/used stamp is a wonderful idea, but of course, not necessary if doing so is not within your means OR if you simply don’t want to.

TLDR: you’re fine :blush:


Thank you all for your answers! So I think I will… avoid adding stamps if the receiver sounds like a serious philatelist, and continue to add them or not based on reading between the lines of profiles for everyone else.

And to be clear, I’m not sweating this in my sleep; as someone said above, sending a postcard is what is required, but it’s nice to make people happy when you can.

This would never have occurred to me. That’s why I think it’s so helpful to ask these questions, even though they might just be worrying about small details - this is fascinating to find out. I had imagined that, for stamp collectors, a pre-paid card might be a lesser thing. Appreciated for the message/image, sure, but not connected to their collection.

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