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Author: murphcor

Joined: 1/29/2011
Posts: 9
Trips Taken: 1
Traveler Since: 2011

August 14, 2011

My husband and I will be going on the China and Yangtze River tour shortly.  We would like to be able to send postcards back to our grandchildren in the States.  How easy or difficult is this to do?  Can we find postcards to send and will the hotels mail them for us if we provide the money for postage?  Thanks in advance for any replies.

Author: trumpet

Joined: 6/13/2010
Posts: 3
Trips Taken: 4
Traveler Since: 2010

August 14, 2011

I mailed postcards from Japan (pre-trip) and they arrived in the States several days later.  China was another matter.  They all arrived to my family and friends but it took almost a month to get there.  You are over there a long time, so it really doesn't matter.  Did not send postcards from Thailand (post-trip) so can't answer that one.  Every hotel we were in mailed them for me and I bought the stamp. 

We went last summer to China.  Have a great trip, it was wonderful.  To me a trip of a lifetime!

Author: hootie

Joined: 3/7/2010
Posts: 127
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

China, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Transylvania, Bulgaria, Chech Republic, Slavakia, Bratislava, Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Crete, Greece, Turkey, Istanbul, Italy, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Tahiti & French Polynesia/Society Islands, Hawaiian Islands, Bermuda, Alaska, Costa Rica, Mexico, United States, Panama Canal, Caribbean (extensively), Canada/Nova Scotia, Canary Islands, Gibralter, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Vatican City, France, Holland, Belgium, Tasmania, Australia, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia.

Traveler Since: 2001

August 14, 2011

I think even street vendors sell post cards of China.  You can get them down to $1 for 10 or more.  Always bargain in China.  I never did until our China trip.  They enjoy the exchange and it really was fun for both sides.  As long as you aren't demanding and trying to cheat them, it is a worthwhile experience. 

We mailed postcards from China...most made it home...some didn't.  Always buy your stamps from post office, hotel or store...not street vendors!  The hotels will mail them for you.

We loved our China & Yangtze River trip...YOU will too.

Author: nancyf

Joined: 4/26/2010
Posts: 155
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

43 of the 50 United States, including Hawaii and Alaska, England , France , Italy , Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Africa (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe. South Africa), Israel, Canada, the Carribbean, Peru, going to Egypt & Jordan in February 2011 ( canceled due to the unrest there, but I will take this trip later!), China, Russia, Kenya, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Sicily.

Traveler Since: 2007

August 16, 2011

In February on our trip to China, I had bought some stamps in the hotel gift shop in Shanghai, put them on the postcards and gave them to the front desk of the hotel to mail. My friend gave them $$ and her postcards to mail. Those postcards never made it to their destinations (and unfortunately, those were the ones to my grandkids). I don't know if the person at the desk pocketed her money or what. Mine had stamps on them, but we turned them in together to the desk, so maybe they threw them all away or else put them in a drawer and forgot. I wasn't happy, but what do you do? Too late. You are already back home by the time you figure it out.

However, in the hotel at Xian or maybe it was Beijing, we did the same scenario (I had put stamps on my postcards, my friend gave them $$ to buy stamps), and all of those cards made it to their destinations. I think it was thievery or incompetence in the first hotel.

I will always follow the "put my own stamps on the postcards" scenario, and if possible, if close enough and safe enough to walk, I will mail them at a post office or postal service place. In all honesty, I had never had trouble mailing postcards from hotels before, but this incident in China soured me on doing that again, if I can at all avoid it. My grandkids were disappointed. They save all of the postcards that I send them from trips.

Author: tomnat

Joined: 6/4/2010
Posts: 77
Trips Taken: 18
Traveler Since: 2004

August 16, 2011

 We suggest buying, writing & adressing  postcards during the trip, but then mail them on your first days home in the US. In many cases they people will get them faster than if mailed abroad.

Mail abroad with non US stamps only if sending to a stamp collector! 

Author: nancyf

Joined: 4/26/2010
Posts: 155
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

43 of the 50 United States, including Hawaii and Alaska, England , France , Italy , Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Africa (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe. South Africa), Israel, Canada, the Carribbean, Peru, going to Egypt & Jordan in February 2011 ( canceled due to the unrest there, but I will take this trip later!), China, Russia, Kenya, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Sicily.

Traveler Since: 2007

August 16, 2011

True, I guess, but sorta defeats the idea of sending postcards. At least to me. Otherwise, just bring the postcards home and give to the person or put in your photo album.

Most of the people who I send postcards to either collect the cards, and want the non-US stamp AND postmark on them, or they give their postcards to me when I get home, and I want the non-US stamp and postmark!!!   :)

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 16, 2011

I agree with Nancy.  People want to get a postcard with a picture of where you are and a message saying something like "This is where we went today.  Fantastic!"  And with a foreign stamp, even if they don't collect.  What's the fun of getting a postcard sent from someone's home before they even go on the trip?

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 17, 2011

Oooops!  I misread that post.  But I still think getting the postcards from abroad means more, even if they take a long time to arrive.

Author: grammyflo

Joined: 3/15/2010
Posts: 168
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2002

August 17, 2011

I have the names I wish to send postcards to on my computer and print out labels with U.S.A. in the last line after the State each time we travel.. One of these labels is to ourselves. When I get it, and I always have, it is date stamped and stamp cancelled in Chinese or whatever. Kind of know when the others were delivered this way. 

My writing leaves a lot to be desired so these printed labels leave no guesswork for hotel staff, post office, which is how I usually mail them. Majority have arrived. Maybe late, but better late than never.

Author: nancyf

Joined: 4/26/2010
Posts: 155
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

43 of the 50 United States, including Hawaii and Alaska, England , France , Italy , Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Africa (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe. South Africa), Israel, Canada, the Carribbean, Peru, going to Egypt & Jordan in February 2011 ( canceled due to the unrest there, but I will take this trip later!), China, Russia, Kenya, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Sicily.

Traveler Since: 2007

August 17, 2011

@grammyflo-- I do the same thing, print out mailing labels before I go!! And with USA on there also!! That way the addresses are very clearly printed. Helps the post offices, I think! Helps me also to get the postcards written and mailed out quickly as I can!

I also put my home return address on them (I take and use some of those hundreds of address labels that one gets from the places that are trying to get donations from me). A friend chuckled at me once for doing that, but I said that if for some reason the intended recipient's address label got messed up or whatever, maybe I would get the postcard so as to know they didn't! And actually that happened one time. Kind of a funny story:

When I was in Hawaii about 3 years ago, I bought some postcards that had the shape of a pineapple rather than just the regular rectangle. I asked the person in the gift shop (expert?) if one stamp would be enough since they were an irregular shape. She said yes. Anyway, when I got back home, at some point, about half of my postcards made it to the intended recipients and half were in my mailbox with "Insufficient postage" stamped on them. I thought it was kinda interesting how some got through and others were "denied". Also, how the P.O. could go ahead and deliver them to my house when just as easy to go ahead and deliver to the intended persons. ANYWAY, I just either hand-delivered or sent in an envelope to the intended folks so that they knew that I really truly had sent them a card and didn't just "say so"!!!

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 17, 2011

I always use labels too.  My handwriting is so poor that I'd never be sure the card would get through.  And that way I know who I've sent postcards to and who I haven't.  And I print out two sets, because sometimes there's something that I know  will be appreciated by someone I've already sent a card to.

Author: hootie

Joined: 3/7/2010
Posts: 127
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

China, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Transylvania, Bulgaria, Chech Republic, Slavakia, Bratislava, Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Crete, Greece, Turkey, Istanbul, Italy, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Tahiti & French Polynesia/Society Islands, Hawaiian Islands, Bermuda, Alaska, Costa Rica, Mexico, United States, Panama Canal, Caribbean (extensively), Canada/Nova Scotia, Canary Islands, Gibralter, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Vatican City, France, Holland, Belgium, Tasmania, Australia, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia.

Traveler Since: 2001

August 17, 2011

I also do the label with USA.  I have never put my address labels on postcards but, I will now.  It sounds like a good idea.  It's nice to pick up new travel related tips even tho I've been traveling for over 40 years.

I think the mail gets through the majority of the time. 

Many years ago, while I was in Hawaii or Tahiti, I mailed a full size coconut to a friend.  Wrote the address and short message in black magic marker on the shell, paid the postage and it was delivered to her where we worked.  My friend (and everyone else) was surprised to say the least!  I have also mailed several "message in a bottle" many times from various islands in the Caribbean.  They all made it OK. 

I also send postcards home, addressed to my cats, with quick notes on things I really want to remember.  (name of a funny waiter, a rainbow, great food place, etc.)  I don't always do a travel diary so this works for me.

Author: hloisb

Joined: 10/30/2012
Posts: 5
Trips Taken: 4
Countries Visited:

China/Yangtze River trip/May 2013, Danube River cruise/Nov 2012), been to Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, Macau, Malacca, Paris, Versailles, Giverny, Rome, Siena, Cinque Terre, Florence, Venice, Vancouver, Toronto, San Miguel de Allende, Mexican Riviera and many places in the US including Hawaii and Alaska

Traveler Since: 2012

April 13, 2013

I think it depends on where you are traveling. While in the Czech Republic last November, I purchased international postcard stamps from the post office and mailed them from a post box in Prague. It cost nearly $40 for the cards and stamps. They all arrived, but not until February. After that, I've told my friends and family that I'm done sending postcards from my travels.

Author: oldbog

Joined: 2/6/2011
Posts: 40
Trips Taken: 6
Traveler Since: 1999

April 14, 2013

 Another option is to purchase the cards as you travel and mail them to people when you get home.  You can be reasonably sure they will be received and folks will still get a glimpse of your trip.

Author: wattsed

Joined: 3/30/2010
Posts: 137
Trips Taken: 3
Countries Visited:

All seven continents, 113 countries and all states except Hawaii and Idaho.Plus some interesting places that are not countries such as The zores, Falkland Islands, South Georgia, etc.

Traveler Since: 2010

April 14, 2013

My daughter mailed postcard to her friends from the Bristish Post Office box  in Antarctica in Feb and they were finally delivered in December...

Author: nancyf

Joined: 4/26/2010
Posts: 155
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

43 of the 50 United States, including Hawaii and Alaska, England , France , Italy , Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Africa (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe. South Africa), Israel, Canada, the Carribbean, Peru, going to Egypt & Jordan in February 2011 ( canceled due to the unrest there, but I will take this trip later!), China, Russia, Kenya, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Sicily.

Traveler Since: 2007

April 14, 2013

hloisb--you mentioned something about getting International postcard stamps. Can you get those from a U.S. post office or how? Are they that expensive? (you said $40 for postcards and stamps, but didn't say how many that was for!)

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